NEW YORK — Britain's Prince William and his wife, Kate, laid flowers Tuesday at one of New York City's most somber sites — the National Sept. 11 Memorial and Museum.
The couple walked across the memorial plaza in pouring rain and wind, each holding a black umbrella. Wearing a fuchsia coat, black tights and high heels, Kate smiled as she spoke with officials before the couple laid a bouquet of flowers at one of the reflecting pools built in the footprints of the fallen towers.
After paying their respects at the pool ringed with the chiseled names of the more than 2,700 people who died on Sept. 11, 2001, William and Kate entered the museum that commemorates the attacks.
A handful of onlookers braved the wet weather for a glimpse of the royals.
"I love them so much," said Kristina Crossan, a 24-year-old teacher from Edison, New Jersey. Her mother, Marianne Crossan, called the rain "a small price to pay."
Another New Jersey resident, Krupa Shaw, took the day off from her Manhattan finance job.
"I took the day off work when they got married. I didn't go to a family event when Kate was in labor, because I wanted to know what she had," said Shaw. "Family will always be there, but there's only one time that Kate has her first baby."
The morning visit to the site where 67 British citizens died — the most of any foreign country — came on the last day of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's trip. Their visit to New York City and his to Washington was the first time either of them has visited those cities.
Ariana Lesko, a 19-year-old student at the Fashion Institute of Technology, said Kate "was just a regular girl" before marrying William. "She's just so down to earth and I think it gives the rest of us normal girls some hope."
On Tuesday evening, William and Kate were expected at a black-tie fundraiser for the University of St. Andrews, where they both got their degrees.
On Monday, William went to the White House and spoke at a World Bank conference. Kate wrapped Christmas gifts and helped children decorate picture frames while touring a child development center.
On Monday evening, the couple attended a reception at the British consul general's residence co-hosted by the Royal Foundation and the Clinton Foundation. When they arrived, they spent some time talking with former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, Chelsea Clinton and her husband, Marc Mezvinsky.
William and Kate then headed to the Barclays Center to watch a basketball game between the Brooklyn Nets and the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Before the game, William asked which team to support, and was told to root for both. The couple met NBA executives and former player Dikembe Mutombo, marking a collaboration that would help raise awareness about animal trafficking.
Next to Mutombo, William said, "At last I'm standing next to someone who is taller than me."
Associated Press writer Julie Pace in New York and Business Writer Tomoko A. Hosaka in Washington contributed to this report.