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Duchess of Cornwall makes first public appearance since brother's funeral

08 MAY 2014

The Duchess of Cornwall put the sadness of the last few weeks aside to make her first public appearance since the funeral of her late brother Mark Shand.

While it has only been a week since her sibling was laid to rest, Camilla, 66, put on a brave face as she carried out two royal duties on Thursday afternoon. As an avid supporter of the UK armed forces, the British royal looked delighted to participate in the two engagements which were held in honour of medical defence staff.

The first saw Camilla visit a Royal Air Force base in Leeming, North Yorkshire, where she opened a £5million medical centre. As she arrived, Camilla was greeted by throngs of schoolchildren who waved Union Jacks in her honour.

 

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The Duchess of Cornwall arriving at RAF base in Leeming



The Duchess was dressed in an elegant pale green coat that featured a pleated skirt, and brightened up her outfit with a light blue scarf. As she chatted to the youngsters, Camilla was handed a beautiful bouquet of flowers and thanked the crowds warmly.

The royal then travelled to the Defence Medical Services (DMS) Whittington in Staffordshire where she opened an armed forces medical training base.

 

duchess of cornwall

The Duchess of Cornwall meeting young children



As the guest of honour, Camilla witnessed a special "Dedication" ceremony at the barracks, followed by a tour of the facility. On her walkabout, the Duchess was presented with pink and red roses and was particularly taken by a dog in the crowd which she bent down to pet.

Shortly after 2pm, Prince Charles's wife took centre stage, delivering an inspirational speech and unveiling a plaque to commemorate the event. She then jetted off back to London via helicopter.

The new training base, which became fully operational for training in March, is part of a £138million site. Last week was the graduation ceremony of the first group of armed forces medics to be trained there.

While Camilla was all smiles on her high-profile visits, she was said to have been "devastated" by the loss of her 62-year-old brother. Mark was laid to rest in Dorset on Thursday 1 May during a private family ceremony at the Holy Trinity Church in Stourpaine.

As she joined the congregation, Camilla was seen wiping tears from her eyes and holding tightly to her husband's hand for support.

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