Britain and the world are mourning the passing of Queen Elizabeth II on Thursday, September 8, at age 96. According to Buckingham Palace, the monarch died at their summer home in Balmoral, her Scottish estate, after reigning for 70 years in the throne.
The Queen was the longest-reigning monarch of the country. Massive crowds flocked just outside Buckingham Palace pouring tributes and singing the national anthem.
Following the death of the Queen, heir apparent Prince Charles and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, will now ascend to the throne as King Charles III and Queen consort. The King will fully address the nation on Friday.
“The King and The Queen Consort will remain at Balmoral this evening and will return to London tomorrow,” Buckingham Palace announced.
“We mourn profoundly the passing of a cherished sovereign and a much-loved mother,” King Charles III said in a statement. “I know her loss will be deeply felt throughout the country, the realms and the Commonwealth, and by countless people around the world,” he added.
The formal arrangements created to deal with the death of the head of state, Operation London Bridge, included provisions for the possibility that the Queen may pass away in Balmoral. Operation Unicorn, the codename of the plans upon her majesty’s death in Scotland is under the roll. The Queen’s coffin will likely spend some time at the Palace of Holyroodhouse after being transported to London.
The Queen’s family has travelled to Balmoral after concerns for her health were growing. Prince Charles, the now-apparent heir to the throne, and his brother, Prince Harry, also rushed to her side.
Newly appointed, Prime Minister Liz Truss offered her condolences and said in a statement that the Queen “provided us with the stability and strength that we needed.”
The Queen during her reign
The reign of Queen Elizabeth II as head of state covered the post-World War II period of recession, the change from imperialism to a Commonwealth, the end of the Cold War, and the UK’s membership in – and exit from – the European Union.
She has been with 15 prime ministers during her time in office, including the current prime minister, just appointed last Tuesday.
At 18:30 BST, a formal notice confirming the passing was put outside, and the union flag flying over the palace was lowered to half-mast.
Prince William and his wife, Catherine, were made the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Cornwall upon the passing of the Queen.
Elizabeth Alexandra Mary Windsor was born the Queen on April 21, 1926, in Mayfair, London.
When her uncle, Edward VIII, abdicated to wed two-time divorcee American, Wallis Simpson, her Father ascended to the throne as King George VI in 1936. Elizabeth became heir apparent at 10 years old.
When Britain and Nazi Germany were at war between 1939 and 1945. Elizabeth and her family stayed at Windsor Castle to help during this period of unrest. Elizabeth, who was then 18 years old, completed five months of training as a driver and basic mechanic with the Auxiliary Territorial Service and aided the army during this crucial time.
She corresponded via letters with Philip, Prince of Greece, who was enlisting in the Royal Navy, during the war. The couple’s relationship flourished, and on November 20, 1947, they were married at Westminster Abbey, with the prince assuming the title of Duke of Edinburgh.
After 74 years of marriage, she would later refer to him as “my strength and stay” before his death in 2021.
Their first son, Charles, was born in 1948; Princess Anne was born in 1950, Prince Andrew in 1960, and Prince Edward in 1964. Princess Elizabeth was representing the ill King in Kenya in 1952 when Philip informed her that her father had passed away. As the new Queen, she went back to London right away at the age of 25.
Elizabeth was crowned at Westminster Abbey on June 2, 1953, at the age of 27, broadcasted live with over 20 million viewers.
via the National Film and Sound Archive Australia
Australian hearts pour out for Queen Elizabeth II
Prime Minister Anthony Albanese offered his sentiments to the media. “From floods and bushfires to wars and a pandemic, her words and presence were a source of comfort, hope and solace for millions.”
“Queen Elizabeth II has been a wise and encouraging guide. Always wanting the best for our nation and greeting each change with understanding, good grace and abiding faith in the Australian people’s judgement.
“From her first trip here, it was clear Her Majesty had a special place in our hearts. And we, in hers.”
According to the Sydney Morning Herald, the Prime minister and Governor-General David Hurley will travel to London to meet with King Charles III in a few days. Queen Elizabeth II completed sixteen tours to Australia and became the first reigning British monarch to visit the country. Her first was in February 1954 after her father, King George VI died. Her last was in 2011, famously dubbed as her “farewell tour,” as Aussies would likely never see their beloved Queen again.
The Queen and her husband Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, reportedly got “the most tumultuous greeting Sydney has ever given any visitor,” according to the Sydney Morning Herald.
Likewise, the media outlet reported that there were one million people lined the streets of the city and Farm Cove.
Australian flags are currently raised at half-mast to honour their beloved monarch. Also, Australia’s parliament will be suspended for 15 days, albeit met with much criticism online.
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