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Prince Harry says his grandfather Prince Philip was the 'master of the barbecue' in heartwarming tribute

The Duke of Edinburgh's funeral will take place on Saturday 17 April

The Duke of Sussex has expressed his sorrow over the loss of his grandfather Prince Philip.

The statement was released on Monday afternoon, just minutes after the Duke of Cambridge issued his own heartfelt message alongside an unseen picture of Prince George with his "great-grandpa".

READ: Why Prince Harry chose to self-isolate at Frogmore Cottage

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WATCH: Prince Philip's best family moments

Sharing his heartache with the world, Harry said of his grandfather: "My grandfather was a man of service, honour and great humour. He was authentically himself, with a seriously sharp wit, and could hold the attention of any room due to his charm—and also because you never knew what he might say next.

"He will be remembered as the longest reigning consort to the Monarch, a decorated serviceman, a Prince and a Duke. But to me, like many of you who have lost a loved one or grandparent over the pain of this past year, he was my grandpa: master of the barbecue, legend of banter, and cheeky right 'til the end.

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"He has been a rock for Her Majesty The Queen with unparalleled devotion, by her side for 73 years of marriage, and while I could go on, I know that right now he would say to all of us, beer in hand, ‘Oh do get on with it!’

"So, on that note, Grandpa, thank you for your service, your dedication to Granny, and for always being yourself. You will be sorely missed, but always remembered - by the nation and the world. Meghan, Archie, and I (as well as your future great-granddaughter) will always hold a special place for you in our hearts.

The heartfelt message was rounded off with, "'Per Mare, Per Terram,'" - which means "By Sea, By Land" in Latin.

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Prince Philip with the royal family on Christmas Day in 2017

Harry, 36, arrived at London's Heathrow Airport on Sunday afternoon. He travelled to the UK without his wife Meghan Markle, who is pregnant with their second child.

A palace spokesperson said that Meghan, who is expecting a baby girl, has been advised not to travel by her doctors due to the advanced stage of her pregnancy.

In accordance with Prince Philip's wishes, the ceremonial royal funeral will take place on the afternoon of Saturday 17 April at St George's Chapel in Windsor Castle.

Buckingham Palace said Prince Philip died at Windsor Castle on Friday, two months before his 100th birthday, leaving the Queen and the royal family "mourning his loss".

MORE: A closer look at Princess Anne's special bond with her father Prince Philip

READ: 11 surprising facts about the Queen and Prince Philip's wedding day

"It is with deep sorrow that Her Majesty The Queen announces the death of her beloved husband, His Royal Highness The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh," the statement read.

"His Royal Highness passed away peacefully this morning at Windsor Castle. Further announcements will made in due course. The Royal Family join with people around the world in mourning his loss."

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Prince Harry was close to his grandfather

The news comes as a huge blow to the royal family. Prince Harry spent the past year in America, after officially stepping away from his royal duties in March 2020. He was known to have a close relationship with his grandfather, and even named his son Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor after him.

MORE: Prince Philip's cousin pays moving tribute to a 'unique man in every way' with rare photo

In 1947, Prince Philip of Greece was naturalised as a British citizen and became Philip Mountbatten instead while serving as a Lieutenant in the Royal Navy. The surname 'Mountbatten-Windsor' has subsequently been given to descendants of the Queen and Prince Philip who are not future Sovereigns, which is why Prince Charles doesn't have the surname himself.

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Prince Philip died aged 99 on Friday

Although Prince Harry has previously used 'Wales' as his surname thanks to his father's title as the Prince of Wales, choosing the Mountbatten-Windsor surname was likely a touching nod to his grandfather and the royal family. His second child with wife Meghan is also likely to take on the same surname.

RELATED: Royal family to wear mourning bands on public engagements in honour of Prince Philip

Just like this grandfather, Harry spent years of his life dedicated to the army. He served in the armed forces for ten years and was deployed to Afghanistan twice, while his grandfather Prince Philip boasted a formidable military career in his time.

At 21 years old, Philip was one of the youngest first lieutenants in the Royal Navy and went on to serve during World War Two. He grew a full beard while out at sea – a far cry from his normally clean-shaven look.

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