Skip to main contentSkip to footer

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle surprise in Canada - and Duke follows in the late Queen's footsteps

The late Queen Elizabeth made a ceremonial puck 21 years ago

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in Canada
Faye James
Faye JamesSenior Editor
Share this:

Prince Harry recently recreated a memorable moment of royal history, following in the footsteps of his late grandmother, Queen Elizabeth, by participating in a ceremonial puck drop at a Vancouver Canucks hockey game against the San Jose Sharks.

This event echoed a similar occasion from 21 years ago when the Queen herself made a ceremonial puck drop at a game between the same teams during her 11-day tour of Canada to celebrate her Golden Jubilee in October 2002.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are all smiles as they attend hockey game in Vancouver

The 2002 event, which saw hockey legend Wayne Gretzky presenting the Queen with the puck, was a notable moment, with the crowd cheering as she carried out the ceremonial drop and then watched the first period from the royal box. 

Prince Harry, The Duke of Sussex drops the puck during a ceremonial face-off with Quinn Hughes #43 of the Vancouver Canucks and Tomas Hertl #48 of the San Jose Sharks prior to their NHL game at Rogers Arena © Derek Cain
Prince Harry drops the puck during a ceremonial face-off with Quinn Hughes #43 of the Vancouver Canucks and Tomas Hertl #48 of the San Jose Sharks prior to their NHL game at Rogers Arena

The Duke of Sussex's participation in the recent game carries forward this unique royal connection with the sport of hockey.

Meghan Markle and her good friend Markus Anderson cheered Harry on© Getty
Meghan Markle and her good friend Markus Anderson cheered Harry on

Prince Harry's visit to Canada, alongside his wife Meghan Markle, is particularly significant as it centers around the upcoming Invictus Games, scheduled to be held in Vancouver and Whistler in 2025. 

As the founder of the Invictus Games, an international adaptive sports tournament for wounded, injured, and sick service personnel and veterans, Prince Harry has been deeply involved since its inception in 2014. 

The trio were in great spirits whilst watching the San Jose Sharks v Vancouver Canucks© Getty
The trio were in great spirits whilst watching the San Jose Sharks v Vancouver Canucks

The Games have been hosted in various cities worldwide, including London, Orlando, Toronto, Sydney, the Netherlands, and Germany, with the 2025 event marking the first return to a previous host country.

In a statement, Prince Harry expressed his excitement about bringing the first-ever Winter Hybrid Games to Canada in 2025. 

Prince Harry recreates the same moment in history as his late grandmother© Jeff Vinnick
Prince Harry recreates the same moment in history as his late grandmother

He highlighted the significance of the Games in expanding the range and profile of winter adaptive sports and emphasized the partnership with the First Nations in the spirit of truth and reconciliation with indigenous communities.

Canada holds a special place for Meghan, 42, and Harry, 39, not only because of its proximity to their current home in Montecito, California, but also due to its personal significance. 

Prince Harry at the faceoff© Jeff Vinnick
Prince Harry at the faceoff

The couple, known as the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, made their first public appearance at the 2017 Invictus Games in Toronto, where Meghan lived while filming the TV series "Suits." 

Additionally, Vancouver holds fond memories for the family, as they spent their first holiday season as a family of three in 2019 with their son, Archie, on Vancouver Island, shortly before stepping back from their royal roles in 2020.

 Check out our Right Royal Podcast. In this week's episode, we reveal the William and Kate's 'most difficult' engagement that showed Princess is 'no pushover'

More Royalty

See more