At the party held at Buckingham Palace on Saturday to honour the families of those who have lost a loved one in the Armed Forces, 800 children and their guests mingled with The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry. One lucky partygoer was 6-year-old Jack, son of murdered soldier, Lee Rigby.
Jack was joined by his mum, Rebecca. The two shared a laugh with Prince Harry as he tried his hand at plate spinning. Lee Rigby was murdered four years ago at his barracks in Woolwich, south-east London by two Islamic extremists.
Jack’s mum told the Mirror: “We met Harry briefly while we were spinning the plates. He’s a really nice guy.
“It’s great for the kids to meet other kids and to know there are others in the same boat.”
Prince Harry also hung out with 3-year-old George Hinchcliffe, who came dressed as his favourite superhero, Spiderman. George’s father, Captain Richard Hinchcliffe died in 2015. He served with The Royal Armoured Medical Corps. He died in an accident shortly after leaving the RAMC. George’s mother, Abigail Hinchcliffe, said it was “very emotional” to be at the palace and to see her son playing with Prince Harry.
The siblings from the Molyneux family also attended the party. Jamie, (18), and his brothers and sister, Arron, Charlie and Bethany lost their father Lieutenant Commander Ian Molyneux, 36, from Wigan. He died at the hands of Able Seaman Ryan Donovan when the nuclear submarine HMS Astute was docked in Southampton. During a civic visit by Southampton’s Mayor, Donovan killed the father of four when he attempted to tackle him as he charged with an assault rifle. For his heroism, Lt Cdr Molyneux was awarded a posthumous George Medal. Second, to the George Cross, this is one of the highest honours to be awarded.
Jamie was 13 at the time of his father’s death. He told the Mirror that it was: “comforting” to know his family had not been forgotten.
“The Duke of Cambridge wrote to us soon after my dad was killed. It was very touching.
“He said he understood what we were going through as siblings, with his experience losing his mum.
“I had two choices to make. I was either going to go off the rails and end up in prison or accept what’s happened and do the best I can.”
Prince Harry addressed those in attendance, saying: “I can assure you that Buckingham Palace gardens have not seen this much fun, ever.
“We’re here to celebrate you and to remind you that we as a family, we as a nation, and we up and down the country will never ever forget about the sacrifices that every single one of you have made.
“You are all together, you are one community of people that have been through the same experiences and for that every single one of us here, all the organisers, the three of us the whole of our family and the whole of this nation, thank you so, so much for everything you guys have done.”