Prince William Opens up About Trauma He Lives With After Working as Rescue Pilot

Prince William shares he suffered some serious trauma after working as an Air Ambulance pilot. In an emotional podcast interview, he details how his time working with East Anglian Air Ambulance (EAAA) from March 2015 to July 2017 and doing several rescue missions impacted his views on life and death. He specifically detailed an incident that made a huge impact on him involving a young boy close to the age of his eldest child, George. 

William explained that the young boy had been hit by a car and his parents were in hysterics. "I went home that night pretty upset but not noticeably. I wasn't in tears, but inside I felt something had changed," he said of the experience, per Metro UK. "I felt a sort of, a real tension inside of me. And then, the next day, going back in again to work, you know, different crew. On to the next job. And that's the thing, you're not always all together. So then you can't spend a day processing it."

While William didn't name the boy specifically, the family of Bobby Hughes tells the Daily Mail they believe the Duke is referring to their son. "William told us how it affected him as a father and how he felt our pain," his mother, Carly, told the outlet. "He's amazing, a credit to our country… I've looked into his eyes and, genuinely, he has got a kind heart."

Prince William opened up about the story once before in the Apple TV documentary Prince William: Time To Walk, where he candidly discussed his mental health journey. He said the experience "really hit him weeks later." "I felt like the whole world was dying. It's an extraordinary feeling. You just feel everyone's in pain, everyone's suffering," he said. "And that's not me. I've never felt that before. My personal life and everything was absolutely fine. I was happy at home and happy at work, but I kept looking at myself, going, 'Why am I feeling like this? Why do I feel so sad?'"

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"And I started to realize that, actually, you're taking home people's trauma, people's sadness, and it's affecting you. But I can't explain why I had that realization what was going on because a lot of people don't have that realization," he continued. He adds: "It absolutely wakes you up, puts your week in the best mood possible, and you feel like you can take on anything and anyone."