Prince Harry Praises Former Marine, Who Is an Amputee, After He Was Forced to End Trek Across Britain

"You might not have completed this one but you certainly achieved it in my mind, so well done," Prince Harry told Lee Spencer as they discussed his British triathlon

Prince Harry Chats with Former Marine who Is an Amputee . Lee Spencer/Instagram
Photo: Lee Spencer/Instagram

Prince Harry offered encouraging words to a former marine, who is an amputee, after he was forced to end his triathlon across Great Britain after suffering "excruciating pain."

With his Triathlon of Great Britain, Lee Spencer aimed to achieve "something no one, able-bodied or disabled, has done before," he said via his website. He planned to swim 22 miles, cycle 1,060 miles, and hike 45 miles. After beginning his trek (cycle phase leg 1) on July 27, Spencer updated fans on Aug. 5, stating that he was "absolutely gutted" that he had to end the triathlon after having pain in his stump.

"It got gradually worse and worse and then this morning, I just couldn't cycle. The pain was excruciating. It was more than I could handle," he said in part in an Instagram video.

Now, Harry has checked in on him to lift his spirits.

"You basically circled the whole of the U.K. and climbed two mountains, and after that, and only after that, did your stump start to give you a few issues to the point where you had to pull out of the very last phase of it," Harry told Spencer during a chat shared on Spencer's Instagram. "You put so much into this. I hope that you're really happy, I know you're not happy, but I hope that you feel really proud of yourself to have done what you've done."

He joked that he wouldn't "dare" ask what Spencer planned to do next.

Spencer responded, reiterating his mantra and purpose.

"For me, it's always been about getting the message out, not only for my disability but to keep your word to your injured servicemen and women ... "

He added that he refuses to give up and is "almost certainly gonna try this again" in another way.

"I definitely do have to do something that I think matters," he said.

Harry added that that "there's a scale of things that matter" and Spencer "started so extreme" so he has room for new ventures.

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"You might not have completed this one but you certainly achieved it in my mind, so well done," Harry told Spencer before joking, "I'm already excited about the next adventure — little adventure, not massive."

In the caption alongside the touching video, Spencer said although his journey "didn't finish the way I'd hoped and I was bitterly disappointed, feeling that I had let my team and everyone who had supported me down," Harry's "very kind words have helped me to process that disappointment and start to see a lot of positives."

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Spencer and Harry are no strangers to supporting one another. In 2016, Spencer was a member of the royal's four-strong amputee rowing team that completed a historic 47-day Odyssey across the Atlantic Ocean.

The four-strong team made up of current and former servicemen who dubbed themselves the Legless Rowers became the first all-amputee crew to cross an ocean after taking part in a grueling race against able-bodied participants.

After a particularly strong storm mid-ocean, Harry surprised them with a call — offering much support. The prince's Invictus Games Foundation, which works to provide the wounded and injured with new challenges, aided their recovery and backed their mission.

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