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Meghan Markle commended for surprise visit to Uvalde to donate food and lay flowers at memorial

The Independent logo The Independent 26/05/2022 Chelsea Ritschel

Meghan Markle is being commended for her dedication to helping others after she visited Uvalde, Texas, to donate food to a community centre and pay her respects to the 19 children and two adults killed in Tuesday’s elementary school shooting.

On Thursday, the Duchess of Sussex was photographed laying a bouquet of flowers outside a makeshift memorial of white crosses bearing the names of the victims of the school shooting.

The duchess’s unannounced visit to the memorial took place after she brought two large bags of food for volunteers hosting a blood drive at the nearby Herby Ham Activity Centre, according to BuzzFeed.

Meghan’s gesture has sparked an outpouring of praise, with many applauding the duchess for taking the time to lend support and pay her respects to the community after the tragedy.

“I love her so. This is so important to show the community that they are not alone in this time of grief,” one person wrote, while another said: “Thank you Meghan for paying a visit to the memorial of all the beautiful and innocent lives that are lost.”

“So proud of Meghan for doing what she’s always done since she was a young girl, which is support vulnerable communities through compassionate acts of charity work. The community in Uvalde needs all of the support they can get,” someone else wrote.

Meghan Markle brings flowers to memorial of Uvalde shooting (AFP via Getty Images) © Provided by The Independent Meghan Markle brings flowers to memorial of Uvalde shooting (AFP via Getty Images)

Others acknowledged that this is not the first time the duchess has shown up to support a community in need, as Meghan previously dedicated her efforts to supporting Hubb Community Kitchen after the Grenfell Tower fire in London.


Video: Meghan Markle visits Uvalde memorial (Sky News Australia)

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The duchess and her husband Prince Harry also paid respects to the victims of New Zealand’s 2019 Christchurch shooting, with the couple visiting New Zealand House in London, where they signed a book of condolences. According to the BBC, the couple wrote: “We are with you,” before signing off the message with the Maori word “arohanui,” which means “much love”.

During Meghan’s visit to Texas, community volunteers told BuzzFeed that the duchess was “really sweet”. “She just kind of walked in with her crew and started putting ice waters in the bucket with us and laying out chips for the people who were needing snacks before and after donating,” one volunteer said, adding: “It’s funny, we didn’t even know it was her until after she left … I mean, to be honest, we thought she was our neighbour.”

Another volunteer said the duchess, who wore a pair of jeans, a gray T-shirt and a baseball cap for the visit, spoke with her like they had “known each other for years”.

Duchess of Sussex also donated food to volunteers hosting blood drive (AFP via Getty Images) © Provided by The Independent Duchess of Sussex also donated food to volunteers hosting blood drive (AFP via Getty Images)

According to a spokesperson for Meghan, she travelled to Uvalde in “a personal capacity as a mother” to offer her “condolences and support in person to a community experiencing unimaginable grief”.

The duke and duchess and their two young children live in California, where they relocated after stepping down from their roles as senior members of the royal family.

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