Prince Harry officially launches 2017 Invictus Games in Toronto

May 2, 2016 12:52 pm

Prince Harry told a Toronto crowd this morning that “2017 will be your chance … to salute those who serve your country” at an event marking the countdown to the 2017 Invictus Games.


Introduced to an audience at the Royal York Hotel as “His Royal Highness Prince Henry of Wales,” Harry said the games will offer Torontonians a chance “to salute those who put themselves in harm’s way so you will not have to.”


He met privately with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau at the hotel before the ceremony.


Prior to the prince’s address, Ottawa city councilor Jody Mitic fought back tears as thanked the prince for founding the Games and talked of losing his feet to a land mine while service in Afghanistan.


“That small little explosion took more than flesh and bone,” Mitic said. “It also took my identity as a soldier.”


“We have a chance to help each other heal,” Mitic said.


She said that it’s appropriate that Canada will host the Games next year on the 100th anniversary of the Battle of Vimy ridge and Canada’s 150th anniversary.


She committed $10-million over two years to support the Games.


Later today, Harry will attend a sledge hockey exhibition game, along with Trudeau, at Ryerson University’s Mattamy Athletic Centre.


The Games were first held in London in 2014 and involved more than 400 competitors from 13 countries.


The Toronto Games, set for September 2017, are slated to feature more competitors and more sports than the event has had before.


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