Prince Harry is spreading smiles.
Seven-year-old Matilda Booth, who has spina bifida and is paralyzed from the chest down, was one of the children that the 33-year-old royal and his wife, Meghan Markle, met at Tuesday’s WellChild Awards. Matilda’s mother, Sharon Booth, told reporters after their meeting the royal couple that they were “really nervous when we got there but [Harry and Meghan] made us feel so much at ease. They were both so nice.”
Matilda shared a special moment with Harry during the meeting, when he told her to “never stop smiling.”
“He made her ‘pinky promise’ to always keep that beautiful smile,” Sharon said.
Meghan, 37, bent down when Matilda presented her with flowers. The Duchess of Sussex plucked a cream rose from the bouquet for the little girl to keep.
“She just seems so gentle and sincere,” Sharon said of Meghan and Harry. “They were just like normal people.”
As Prince Harry asked whether Sharon would get emotional during the evening, Meghan reassured her, “By the way, me too. I won’t be able to hold back.”
Amy Brackley, whose 4-year-old son son Mckenzie was joint winner of the Inspirational Child Years Award with Matilda, said their meeting with the royal couple was “amazing.”
“They were so lovely,” she explained to reporters. “They knew he was scared of the cameras and they said they didn’t like the cameras either so they turned around. They said he was amazing and to keep going the way he is going and told him to look after me.”
Amy added, “He’s never going to forget this, even though he’s only 4.”
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Prince Harry and Meghan also chatted with 10-year-old Chloe Henderson, who boldly asked the royal couple a very important question.
“There’s a question I have to ask you,” she said, as Harry laughed and hid his head in his hands. “What’s your favorite Disney film?”
Harry said he loved The Lion King, while Meghan replied that she has “always loved The Little Mermaid.”
During Tuesday’s event in London, Harry also revealed that he liked Zootopia and Moana, and shared one of his favorite parts of the latter film is “when the chicken [Heihei] comes up and finds himself out at sea in a boat.”
Speaking at last year’s awards, Harry said, “These awards were created to shine a bright light on an amazingly brave group of children and young people, on their lives, and on the resolve they and their families have shown to overcome challenges. Life for families caring for seriously ill children is exceptionally tough. And without WellChild it is even tougher.”