Prince Harry expresses condolences to family of former Afghanistan comrade who dies after PTSD battle

Prince Harry has written a private letter of condolence to the family of a soldier he fought alongside in Afghanistan, after he is feared to have taken his own life, following a battle with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

Warrant Officer Nathan Hunt, 39, was found dead at his home in Lincoln last week after telling colleagues he was struggling with depression.

The father of one, who was decorated for his service in Helmand Province, had also reportedly complained about the care and treatment he had been receiving from the Ministry of Defence, after developing mental health problems following his service.

WO Hunt served alongside Prince Harry in a desert reconnaissance unit, helping to identify roadside bombs in Helmand Province.

Following his 2008 tour he received a Mention in Dispatches for his courage and professionalism.

But it is understood he was later diagnosed with a stress related condition believed to have been caused by his frontline experiences.

Prince Harry served alongside Warrant Officer Nathan Hunt in Afghanistan in 2008 Credit: John Stillwell/PA Archive
A former colleague told the Mail on Sunday that he had been unhappy about the treatment he had been receiving from the Army.

The soldier said: “Nathan was a cracking bloke who saved a lot of lives in Afghanistan. He fought the demons in his head for years but it seems they won in the end.

“He said recently at a get-together for veterans that the care he was receiving for his condition was useless and he was thinking of getting out of the Army.”

A spokesman for Army said: “Our thoughts are with his family at this difficult time. The circumstances of his death are currently being investigated and it would be inappropriate to comment further.”

Prince Harry has campaigned for the welfare of veterans through his Invictus Games initiative Credit: Getty Images
While the exact circumstances of his death on January 2 remained unclear, an inquest is expected to open later this month.

A Buckingham Palace spokesman confirmed that Prince Harry had written a private letter of condolence to the family of WO Hunt.

The Prince, who spent ten years in the Army, rising to the rank of Captain, undertook two tours of Afghanistan.

Since leaving the military he has continued to work to support his fellow servicemen and has campaigned to improve the help given to those suffering from mental health issues.

Last year he launched an initiative with the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge aimed at giving the Armed Forces and their families better training to cope with mental health problems.

Prince Harry has pledged to support veterans with mental health issues Credit: Steve Parsons/PA
Under the scheme members of the military will be encouraged to take their mental health as seriously as their physical fitness.

He has spoken candidly about his own issues following the death of his mother and last year revealed in the Telegraph that he had sought counselling in his late twenties.

Prince Harry, along with the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, have been spearheading a campaign through the Heads Together charity, which is aimed at dispelling the stigma surrounding mental health.

In 2016 the military mental health charity Combat Stress reported a surge in the number of referrals of veterans suffering from problems associated with depression and post traumatic stress disorder.

WO Hunt’s death is the second tragedy to hit Prince Harry’s desert squad. In March 2013, Corporal James Dunsby, 31 died after collapsing during a Special Air Service selection march in the Brecon Beacons.

Source: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2018/01/07/prince-harry-expresses-condolences-family-former-afghanistan/

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