Prince Harry added a touch of royalty to Thursday’s NFL Honors, surprising attendees as he presented the ‘Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year’ award to Cameron Heyward, the defensive tackle for the Pittsburgh Steelers.
In his heartfelt address, the 39-year-old prince commended the athletes for their remarkable contributions on and off the field, emphasizing their role model status and impact on millions. “This final award—the highest honour—is all about serving your community,” Harry expressed, paying tribute to a special man whose commitment to helping others reflects a remarkable story.
The ecstatic recipient, Heyward, couldn’t contain his excitement, exclaiming, “Man, Prince freaking Harry. Man, I’m in shock. That’s Prince Harry,” as he took the stage to accept the prestigious award from the Duke of Sussex.
Prince Harry’s surprise appearance came just hours after his return to California from a brief trip to the U.K., where he visited his father, King Charles, following the monarch’s recent cancer diagnosis. Buckingham Palace disclosed that the cancer was detected during “subsequent diagnostic tests” after the king’s surgery to address an enlarged prostate in January.
Despite the health setback, the palace assured that King Charles would continue his state and official responsibilities during the ongoing treatment.
The NFL Honors, an annual event recognizing the top players, coaches, and teams in the NFL, witnessed a star-studded ceremony hosted by Keegan-Michael Key. Notable attendees included Issa Rae, Janelle Monáe, Aly Raisman, Flavor Flav, Demar Hamlin, Justin Hartley, and Gayle King.
It’s worth noting that Prince Harry, a sports enthusiast, made his debut at the Super Bowl in 2022, attending with his first cousin, Princess Eugenie. Following the Los Angeles Rams’ victory, he was spotted celebrating with the team in their locker room.
– Farheen Ali