Prince Harry delivers emotional speech about fatherhood

Britain's Prince Harry welled up while delivering an emotional speech on Tuesday at an annual awards ceremony for children with severe illnesses, their families and caregivers.

Harry, 35, who first attended the WellChild Awards more than a decade ago, recounted how his feelings about the event changed while attending the last year's ceremony knowing his wife Meghan was pregnant.

"I remember squeezing Meghan's hand so tight during the award and both of us thinking, 'what it would be like to be parents one day' and more so 'what it would be like to do everything we could to protect and help our child should they be born with immediate challenges or become unwell over the time'," he said after being overcome with emotion and earning applause from the crowd.

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Meghan Markle and Prince Harry step out with Archie in South Africa
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Meghan Markle and Prince Harry step out with Archie in South Africa
Meghan, Duchess of Sussex holds her baby son Archie as she and Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex meet Archbishop Desmond Tutu and his wife Leah at the Tutu foundation in Cape Town on September 25, 2019. (Photo by HENK KRUGER / POOL / AFP) (Photo credit should read HENK KRUGER/AFP/Getty Images)
Britain's Duke and Duchess of Sussex, Prince Harry and his wife Meghan hold their baby son Archie as they meet with Archbishop Desmond Tutu at the Tutu Legacy Foundation in Cape Town on September 25, 2019. - The British royal couple are on a 10-day tour of southern Africa -- their first official visit as a family since their son Archie was born in May. (Photo by HENK KRUGER / POOL / AFP) (Photo credit should read HENK KRUGER/AFP/Getty Images)
Britain's Duke and Duchess of Sussex, Prince Harry and his wife Meghan hold their baby son Archie as they meet with Archbishop Desmond Tutu (unseen) at the Tutu Legacy Foundation in Cape Town on September 25, 2019. - The British royal couple are on a 10-day tour of southern Africa -- their first official visit as a family since their son Archie was born in May. (Photo by HENK KRUGER / POOL / AFP) (Photo credit should read HENK KRUGER/AFP/Getty Images)
TOPSHOT - Britain's Duke and Duchess of Sussex, Prince Harry and his wife Meghan hold their baby son Archie as they meet with Archbishop Desmond Tutu and his wife Leah at the Tutu Legacy Foundation in Cape Town on September 25, 2019. (Photo by HENK KRUGER / POOL / AFP) (Photo credit should read HENK KRUGER/AFP/Getty Images)
CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA - SEPTEMBER 25: Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex and their baby son Archie Mountbatten-Windsor at a meeting with Archbishop Desmond Tutu at the Desmond & Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation during their royal tour of South Africa on September 25, 2019 in Cape Town, South Africa. (Photo by Toby Melville - Pool/Getty Images)
CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA - SEPTEMBER 25: Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, Meghan, Duchess of Sussex and their baby son Archie Mountbatten-Windsor meet Archbishop Desmond Tutu and his daughter Thandeka Tutu-Gxashe at the Desmond & Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation during their royal tour of South Africa on September 25, 2019 in Cape Town, South Africa. (Photo by Pool/Samir Hussein/WireImage)
CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA - SEPTEMBER 25: Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, Meghan, Duchess of Sussex and their baby son Archie Mountbatten-Windsor meet Archbishop Desmond Tutu and his daughter Thandeka Tutu-Gxashe at the Desmond & Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation during their royal tour of South Africa on September 25, 2019 in Cape Town, South Africa. (Photo by Pool/Samir Hussein/WireImage)
CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA - SEPTEMBER 25: Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, Meghan, Duchess of Sussex and their baby son Archie Mountbatten-Windsor meet Archbishop Desmond Tutu and his daughter Thandeka Tutu-Gxashe at the Desmond & Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation during their royal tour of South Africa on September 25, 2019 in Cape Town, South Africa. (Photo by Pool/Samir Hussein/WireImage)
CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA - SEPTEMBER 25: Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, Meghan, Duchess of Sussex and their baby son Archie Mountbatten-Windsor meet Archbishop Desmond Tutu and his daughter Thandeka Tutu-Gxashe at the Desmond & Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation during their royal tour of South Africa on September 25, 2019 in Cape Town, South Africa. (Photo by Pool/Samir Hussein/WireImage)
CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA - SEPTEMBER 25: Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, Meghan, Duchess of Sussex and their baby son Archie Mountbatten-Windsor meet Archbishop Desmond Tutu and his daughter Thandeka Tutu-Gxashe at the Desmond & Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation during their royal tour of South Africa on September 25, 2019 in Cape Town, South Africa. (Photo by Pool/Samir Hussein/WireImage)
CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA - SEPTEMBER 25: Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex tend to their baby son Archie Mountbatten-Windsor at a meeting with Archbishop Desmond Tutu at the Desmond & Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation during their royal tour of South Africa on September 25, 2019 in Cape Town, South Africa. (Photo by Toby Melville - Pool/Getty Images)
Britain's Duke and Duchess of Sussex, Prince Harry and his wife Meghan hold their baby son Archie as they meet with Archbishop Desmond Tutu and his wife (unseen) at the Tutu Legacy Foundation in Cape Town on September 25, 2019. - The British royal couple are on a 10-day tour of southern Africa -- their first official visit as a family since their son Archie was born in May. (Photo by HENK KRUGER / POOL / AFP) (Photo credit should read HENK KRUGER/AFP/Getty Images)
CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA - SEPTEMBER 25: Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, Meghan, Duchess of Sussex and their baby son Archie Mountbatten-Windsor meet Archbishop Desmond Tutu and his daughter Thandeka Tutu-Gxashe at the Desmond & Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation during their royal tour of South Africa on September 25, 2019 in Cape Town, South Africa. (Photo by Toby Melville/Pool/Samir Hussein/WireImage)
CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA - SEPTEMBER 25: Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, Meghan, Duchess of Sussex and their baby son Archie Mountbatten-Windsor meet Archbishop Desmond Tutu and his daughter Thandeka Tutu-Gxashe at the Desmond & Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation during their royal tour of South Africa on September 25, 2019 in Cape Town, South Africa. (Photo by Toby Melville - Pool/Getty Images)
CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA - SEPTEMBER 25: Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex tend to their baby son Archie Mountbatten-Windsor at a meeting with Archbishop Desmond Tutu at the Desmond & Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation during their royal tour of South Africa on September 25, 2019 in Cape Town, South Africa. (Photo by Toby Melville - Pool/Getty Images)
CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA - SEPTEMBER 25: Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, Meghan, Duchess of Sussex and their baby son Archie Mountbatten-Windsor meet Archbishop Desmond Tutu at the Desmond & Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation during their royal tour of South Africa on September 25, 2019 in Cape Town, South Africa. (Photo by Toby Melville - Pool/Getty Images)
CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA - SEPTEMBER 25: Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, Meghan, Duchess of Sussex and their baby son Archie Mountbatten-Windsor meet Archbishop Desmond Tutu at the Desmond & Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation during their royal tour of South Africa on September 25, 2019 in Cape Town, South Africa. (Photo by Toby Melville - Pool/Getty Images)
CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA - SEPTEMBER 25: Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, Meghan, Duchess of Sussex and their baby son Archie Mountbatten-Windsor meet Archbishop Desmond Tutu and his daughter Thandeka Tutu-Gxashe at the Desmond & Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation during their royal tour of South Africa on September 25, 2019 in Cape Town, South Africa. (Photo by Toby Melville/Pool/Samir Hussein/WireImage)
CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA - SEPTEMBER 25: Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, Meghan, Duchess of Sussex and their baby son Archie Mountbatten-Windsor meet Archbishop Desmond Tutu and his daughter Thandeka Tutu-Gxashe at the Desmond & Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation during their royal tour of South Africa on September 25, 2019 in Cape Town, South Africa. (Photo by Toby Melville - Pool/Getty Images)
CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA - SEPTEMBER 25: Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, Meghan, Duchess of Sussex and their baby son Archie Mountbatten-Windsor meet Archbishop Desmond Tutu and his daughter Thandeka Tutu-Gxashe at the Desmond & Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation during their royal tour of South Africa on September 25, 2019 in Cape Town, South Africa. (Photo by Pool/Samir Hussein/WireImage)
CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA - SEPTEMBER 25: Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, Meghan, Duchess of Sussex and their baby son Archie Mountbatten-Windsor meet Archbishop Desmond Tutu and his daughter Thandeka Tutu-Gxashe at the Desmond & Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation during their royal tour of South Africa on September 25, 2019 in Cape Town, South Africa. (Photo by Pool/Samir Hussein/WireImage)
CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA - SEPTEMBER 25: Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, Meghan, Duchess of Sussex and their baby son Archie Mountbatten-Windsor meet Archbishop Desmond Tutu and his daughter Thandeka Tutu-Gxashe at the Desmond & Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation during their royal tour of South Africa on September 25, 2019 in Cape Town, South Africa. (Photo by Pool/Samir Hussein/WireImage)
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The Duke and Duchess of Sussex became parents for the first time with the birth of their son, Archie, in May. Harry said becoming a father deepened his appreciation for the charity's work in supporting sick children.

"As parents, being here and speaking to all of you pulls at my heartstrings in a way I could never have understood until I had a child of my own," he said.

Harry applauded the families at the award ceremony, saying their example was a greater source of optimism, hope and strength that no amount of parenting advice could ever give.

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