May 10, 2013 at 12:07 PM ET
Prince Harry paid tribute to fallen American military personnel during a solemn trip Friday to Arlington National Cemetery.
The prince, a helicopter pilot in Britain’s Royal Air Force, laid a wreath and a handwritten note on the grave of one soldier in Section 60, the burial ground for soldiers killed in Iraq and Afghanistan.
"To my comrades-in-arms of the United States of America, who have paid the ultimate sacrifice in the cause of freedom,” read the note, which was signed, “Captain Harry Wales."
Wearing his full British ceremonial uniform, the prince took a private walk among Arlington’s white grave markers before also laying a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknowns. The note in that wreath read: "In grateful memory of all those who have given their lives in the cause of freedom. Captain Harry Wales."
The somber morning contrasted the flurry of activity and the trail of giddy fans who followed the prince as he started his current U.S. tour on Thurday with a visit to Capitol Hill. There he took in an exhibit by a land mine-clearing charity once supported by his mother, the late Princess Diana.
The prince then surprised guests at a Mother’s Day tea hosted by first lady Michelle Obama at the White House, before attending a diplomatic reception at the British Embassy.
On Friday the prince also was scheduled to visit wounded veterans at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, where he will tour the facility’s prosthetics center.
Harry then heads to Colorado to visit the British Armed Forces team competing for the first time in the Warrior Games, a tournament for injured service members.