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Kate Middleton sympathises with military families during touching video call

The Duchess of Cambridge heard about the work of the Royal British Legion

Emily Nash

The Duchess of Cambridge has told the families of military personnel who have lost their lives to be "proud" of their loved ones, and the "sacrifice and bravery they've shown" in a touching video call to mark Remembrance week.

She told them: "I'm sure you spend your time every day remembering your loved ones but it's so important that the nation comes together and really spends time thinking about those who have lost their lives and the families that have been impacted.

"It's been a real honour to speak to all of you and I think I speak for the whole nation when I say just how proud you should be of your loved ones, and for the sacrifice and the bravery that they've shown.

"I'll certainly be thinking of you this difficult week and will be for many years to come."

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WATCH: Kate says it's a 'real honour' to speak with military families 

The Duchess spoke to 11-year-old Charlton Taylor, who was just ten months old when his father Royal Marine Michael Taylor was killed in action in Afghanistan in 2010.

"Are these your daddy's medals? Wow," she said.

Told that one was for Afghanistan and one for Iraq, she replied: "It's very special that you're wearing them."

Charlton told the Duchess that he liked to look at photographs of his father and hear stories about him, which she said was "amazing."

His mother Sonia Fleming, from Rhyl, North Wales, explained how she was left with her baby son and his older brothers aged 11 and 13, but the Royal British Legion had played a vital role in supporting the family.

RELATED: The royal family reunite for moving Remembrance Sunday service

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Kate spoke with Chantelle, Serena, Charlton and Sonia

Kate, who wore a poppy on the black collar of her white blouse and sat surrounded by photographs of her own family, also heard from Serena Alexander, whose son Sam was killed in Afghanistan in 2011, two years after receiving the military cross for rescuing his commanding officer from the Taliban.

Serena, from London, told the Duchess: "Very sadly on his second tour, they were inspecting a compound and an IED went off and killed Sam, his commanding officer and an interpreter.

"That was when we first met the Royal British Legion, firstly on repatriation when they were just so kind at Wootton Bassett and just so warm and loving and helpful and just friendly at a time that was so dreadfully sad."

She told Kate how the Legion had provided a "kind of comfort blanket" of practical and moral support.

Also on the call was Chantelle Wynn, from Tamworth, who was widowed in 2015 when her husband Ryan tragically took his own life after struggling with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder following a six month tour of Afghanistan as a medic in the Territorial Army.

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The Duchess attended the Remembrance Sunday service last week

The couple had been together from the age of 16 and were married for 16 years, welcoming daughters Rosie and Daisy. She said she had not known about the Royal British Legion’s work until they offered her crucial financial and emotional support, adding: "You wear a poppy and you put your donation in, but I didn’t know where the donations went. But now, I know exactly where those donations go to."

Praising the charity, the Duchess, who was pictured with photographs of her own family behind her, told the group: "Sadly, not everybody gets to see that or even actually understand the role they play for families such as yourselves. It has such a big impact, particularly at such tragic times."

The Legion provides lifelong support to anyone who has served with the British Armed Forces and their families. They also help bereaved families with funeral costs, ongoing emotional support and introductions to counselling or mental health support.

For more information, visit www.britishlegion.org.uk/

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