Meet the Fan Who Bear Hugged Prince Harry, Rob Hufford! (Exclusive)

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Prince Harry really is a man of the people, and sometimes that lands him in an adorable, enthusiastic bear hug from an admiring fan.

While watching a sailing event during this year's Invictus Games in Sydney, Australia, Harry and wife, Meghan Markle, were surprised by one of the event's competitors, Rob Hufford, who jumped on board Harry's boat to show the royals some love with a massive embrace that lifted the 34-year-old prince off his feet.

ET's Kevin Frazier caught up with Hufford in Australia on Monday, and the affable, enthusiastic Hamilton, Ohio, native opened up about what exactly led to the heartwarming moment between him and Harry.

"We were sailing and we'd just finished our competition, where we came in fourth, and on our way back to the harbor we heard a voice from behind us asking for Ryan, our skipper… when we finally looked back we realized it was Prince Harry," Hufford recalled. 

"I go, 'Hey! Can I get a hug later?' And he goes, 'Sure! How about right now?' And I go, 'Um, we're on two different boats, sir,'" he continued. Hufford didn't let that keep him from getting a hug though, and they brought the boats close enough for him to jump on Harry's boat.

"[I gave him] just a big old squeeze and picked him up," Hufford explained. "He loved it! Did you see that smile?!"

Hufford admitted that Prince Harry "definitely was a little scared" when he went in to hug the Duchess, who is pregnant with the couple's first baby.

"He was like 'be careful!' But I knew she is pregnant, and I'm super excited for them… and a royal baby again. So I gave her a very delicate, light hug."

Afterward, Hufford said he shared his congratulations with the expectant mom, and gently put his hand on her stomach.

"Yeah, I'm pretty sure I touched the royal baby bump," Hufford said with a laugh, adding that he got a vibe that the couple will be welcoming a little girl.

"It was truly an honor to just meet them, and also it's an equal honor to be here, representing the U.S. at the Invictus Games," Hufford said of the international event, similar to the Paralympics, that was created by Prince Harry in 2014, in which wounded or disabled military personnel and veterans compete in a variety of sports. "More so than anything, I just wanted to thank him and show him my gratitude for what he has done for the wounded, injured and ill communities in militaries across the world."

As a retired member of the United States Air Force, Hufford said he has a real appreciation for the medicinal benefits of hugging, based on studies that show it can help people mentally and physically. 

"Studies have been done that show 12 hugs a day, giving and/or receiving, will promote growth and release positive energy," he said. "And, as a big guy, I give great hugs!"

Check out the video below for more on the Duke and Duchess of Sussex's exciting royal tour of Australia.


Meghan Markle Cradles Baby Bump as She and Prince Harry Visit Fraser Island During Royal Tour

Prince Harry Says He Wants a Baby Girl With Meghan Markle

Prince Harry Sweetly References Meghan Markle's Pregnancy at Invictus Games Opening Ceremony

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