Last night, the Duke and Duchess Sussex were guests at a gala celebration of the military in New York City. 

Meghan Markle attended the ‘Salute to Freedom’ event on an aircraft carrier that houses the Intrepid Air, Air and Space Museum. Meghan was wearing a Carolina Herrera flowing gown and had a train that reached her thighs. 

The 40-year-old mother-of-two’s dress for the gala matched her red satin $350 (£260) Giuseppe Zanotti slingback stilettos – a colour chosen to match the red poppies she and Prince Harry both wore on their outfits.  

Harry was in black tie, with the KCVO (Knight Commander of the Royal Victorian Order) Neck Order and Star on his bow tie. The Queen gave this medal to Harry in appreciation of his distinguished service to the monarchy.

On the red carpet, Meghan answered a question about her pride in her husband: “I’m always proud.” 

Harry, who was a ten-year veteran of the British Army, presented medals to the Intrepid Value Awards recipients, five veterans and their families.

After a ride in a hot-dog car, the Duke said he had the American Dream. He also spoke highly of the service personnel and their families. 

Presenting Intrepid Valor Awards, the Duke spoke out about his military experiences and how they shaped who he became.

The Intrepid Museum audience heard him tell them that it was wonderful to return on USS Intrepid 10 years after his last trip. A lot has happened since then. It was just last week that I took a ride in the Oscar Mayer Wienermobile. What’s the harm in living the American dream?

“I have lived here for almost two years. Your support for those who risk their lives to defend our liberties and freedoms is amazing and greatly appreciated.

It reminds me of how much we Brits love our military. We share a unique relationship with our respective armed forces, which I have been privileged to support for so many years.

Harry spent a decade in the military and served 2 tours of Afghanistan. Since 2014, Harry has organized the Invictus Games to honor wounded veterans and servicemen.

He said: “As Remembrance Day is observed in Britain tomorrow, it shares with Veterans Day in America. My hope for us all is that we continue to recognize the importance of our veterans and troops and to help them feel well. They and we are both better because of it.

‘I served 10 year in the military. This includes two tours of duty with Afghanistan. One as an FAC on the ground, with some of you. The other was as an Apache helicopter pilot, supporting you and talking to them.

“Nothing was more important than the time that I spent with my soldiers during a shell scratche, eating an MRE in the back tank of a tanks, thanks for swaps, flying missions overhead, knowing the ones below were safer or just making fun of each other when we needed it most.

“My experiences in military service made me who I am, and I will never forget the people with whom I was able to share my life.  

Jon Bon Jovi is one of the award recipients. A lifetime service award will be given to him in recognition of his contributions in providing shelter and food for those in need, in New Jersey in particular.

Bon Jovi was also able to assist veterans, having cancelled a Miami concert on October 31 after being tested positive for Covid-19. 

The Jon Bon Jovi Soul Foundation has provided housing for homeless veterans and care at Walter Reed medical center, and in July they announced a $100,000 grant to support the American Legion’s Veterans Center of Hoboken. 

Bob Pittman, the chairman and CEO of iHeart Media, will be awarded the Intrepid Salute Award.  

Harry is widely recognized for his efforts with veterans, including the creation of Invictus Games for sick and wounded servicemen and their women in 2014. 

The 37-year-old, who undertook two tours in Afghanistan – one in 2008 and another in 2012, retired from the military in 2015.  

After being removed from the royal family, he is not allowed to wear military attire. However, he is allowed to continue wearing the medals he’s earned. 

All senior royals wore suits at the April funeral for Prince Philip to keep Harry from embarrassing him. 

Yesterday night Harry and Meghan had a great time as they laughed at the welcoming party on their red carpet. 

“You’re from Northwestern, right?” The duchess asked one man about Northwestern University, which she was referring to as the Chicago college where she graduated in 2003. She had a double major of theater and international relations.

“How did that happen?” He laughed, looking stunned. She replied, laughing and looking taken aback. 

Yesterday’s gala was described by organizers as one that’recognizes extraordinary leadership’ and honors brave women and men who defend our country.

Funds raised by the event enable ‘educational experiences to more than 30000 students per year, innovative STEM content, programs for vets and military families, as well as exhibitions telling stories of courage and innovation and the preservation and care of historic artifacts, collections, and other items in the Museum’s collection.

Carolina Herrera from Venezuela has often been Meghan’s fashion stylist. Herrera has dressed Melania Donald, Jacqueline Onassis, Laura Bush, and Michelle Obama. She regularly sells her gowns for $5,000.

At the Trooping of the Colour London, June 2018, the event to mark the Queen’s 40th birthday, the 40-year-old wore pink Herrera dresses. 

Although the occasion marked the Los Angeles-born duchess’s appearance on Buckingham Palace’s balcony, eyebrows were raised over her off-the-shoulder style, which was considered to be against protocol.

In May 2021 she opted to wear a red $1,700 Carolina Herrera shirt dress emblazoned with poppies for the Vax Live virtual conference, which she joined from their home in Montecito, California. 

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle attend the 2021 Salute To Freedom Gala at the Intrepid Museum in New York City last night

Prince Harry and Meghan markle were at last night’s 2021 Salute To Freedom Gala, held at The Intrepid Museum in New York City.

The couple wear red poppies on their outfits as a symbol of remembrance  at the Intrepid Sea-Air-Space Museum last night

The couple wear red poppies on their outfits as a symbol of remembrance  at the Intrepid Sea-Air-Space Museum last night

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex arrive for the Intrepid Museum's Salute to Freedom Gala in New York City last night

Last night, the Duke and Duchess Of Sussex arrived in New York City for last night’s Salute to Freedom Gala at Intrepid Museum.

The duchess's stunning dress with its long train is seen as she enters the gala hall, ahead of the awards

As the duchess enters the gala hall ahead of the award ceremony, she is seen in her stunning gown with a long train.

The Duchess of Sussex smiles as she attends the Salute To Freedom Gala at the Intrepid Sea-Air-Space Museum last night

As she smiles at last night’s Salute To Freedom Gala, the Duchess Of Sussex was smiling

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex attend the 2021 Salute to Freedom gala last night, held on the eve of Veterans Day in the US

Yesterday, the Duchess and Duke of Sussex attended the 2021 Salute to Freedom gala. This event was held just before Veterans Day.

The pair laughed and joked with the four people they met on the red carpet, ahead of the awards

Before the Awards, the pair joked and laughed together with the four individuals they had met while on the red-carpet.

Meghan arrives at the Salute to Freedom event last night in a flowing red Carolina Herrera gown with a long train

Meghan arrived at Salute to Freedom last night wearing a Carolina Herrera flowing gown and a long, red-colored train. 

Harry can be seen sporting his regimental medals on his chest and the KCVO Neck Order and Star attached to his bow tie. The medal is given by the Queen in recognition of distinguished personal service to the monarchy

Harry is seen wearing his regimental medals across his chest and his KCVO Neck Order and Star on his bow tie. In recognition of her distinguished service, the Queen gives the medal.

Prince Harry attended the ceremony on the Intrepid Museum in New York last night after he was asked to present awards

Prince Harry, who was requested to award awards at the Intrepid Museum in New York City last night, attended the ceremony 

Harry and Meghan arrive for the Intrepid Museum's Salute to Freedom gala in New York City last night

Harry and Meghan were in New York City to attend the Salute to Freedom gala at Intrepid Museum.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex arrive at the Intrepid Museum for the Salute to Freedom Gala yesterday evening

Yesterday night, yesterday’s Salute to Freedom Gala saw the Duchess and Duke of Sussex arrive at Intrepid Museum.

Meghan Markle, 40, was beaming as she attended the event in Manhattan on Wednesday

Meghan Markle (40), was radiant as she attended Wednesday’s event in Manhattan

The pair were met by four people as a welcoming party - one of whom, Markle noted, attended the same university in Chicago as she did

As a welcome party, four friends met the pair. Markle pointed out that one of them attended Chicago’s same university as Markle.

The pair left their two children - Archie, 2, and five-month-old Lilibet - behind for their night on the town

For their evening on the town, they left behind their children Archie (2 years old) and Lilibet (5 months).

The Duchess of Sussex attends the 2021 Salute To Freedom Gala at the Intrepid Sea-Air-Space Museum last night

The Duchess Sussex was present at last night’s 2021 Salute To Freedom Gala, held at Intrepid Sea-Air Space Museum

The pair arrived with a film crew in tow to document their activities

To document their adventures, the couple arrived in a crew of film-makers.

Harry and Meghan are seen on Wednesday evening meeting the welcome party at the gala

Harry and Meghan meet at the gala welcome party Wednesday evening.

The duchess can be seen beaming broadly as she arrived at Wednesday night's event

As she arrives at Wednesday’s event, the duchess beams broadly.

The gala is being held at the Intrepid, an aircraft carrier turned into a museum and docked off the coast of Manhattan

Gala is held at Intrepid, an old aircraft carrier that was converted into a museum. It docks off Manhattan’s coast.

Harry is seen in 2008 in Helmand Province in Afghanistan, serving with the British army

Harry, in Helmand Province, Afghanistan in 2008 serving in the British Army

The Queen's grandson has spoken frequently of relishing the anonymity and camaraderie of military life. He is seen in Afghanistan, during his 2008 tour

He has often spoken of his admiration for the camaraderie and anonymity of military life. He was seen here in Afghanistan on his 2008 tour.

Known as Captain Wales, Harry is seen in November 2012 in Afghanistan serving in southern Afghanistan

Harry, also known as Captain Wales is seen serving in Afghanistan in November 2012.

Prince Harry is seen with his brother Prince William and uncle, Prince Andrew, attending a Remembrance Sunday ceremony at the Centopath in London on November 10, 2019. The annual ceremony was the last commemoration of the war ending that  Harry attended as a working member of the royal family

Prince Harry and his uncle Prince Andrew are seen together at a Remembrance Sunday ceremony held at the Centopath, London, on November 10, 2019. The annual ceremony was the last commemoration of the war ending that  Harry attended as a working member of the royal family

Harry and his brother are seen on November 11, 2018 at the annual Remembrance Sunday commemoration

Harry and his brother were seen at Remembrance Sunday 2018 commemoration.

To mark Remembrance Sunday in 2020, Harry and Meghan visited the Los Angeles National Cemetery

Harry and Meghan visited Los Angeles National Cemetery to commemorate Remembrance Sunday, 2020.

The pair lay flowers at the site in California in November 2020

In November 2020, the couple laid flowers on the California site.