Queen Elizabeth II, head of state the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, is dead.
She passed on on Thursday after doctors announced their concern for her health.
“The Queen died peacefully in Balmoral this afternoon. The King and Queen Consort will remain in Balmoral this evening and will return to London tomorrow,” the Royal Family tweeted.
The Queen, who was 96 years old, died in the presence of her family members.
She will be succeeded by her son Charles, Prince of Wales. He was named successor in 2018 by the Queen at the Commonwealth Head of Government Meeting (CHOGM).
She also marked her 70th year as Queen of Britain, during which she asked that Camilla, Duchess of
Cornwall, be addressed as Queen Consort when Prince Charles becomes king.
“And when, in the fullness of time, my son Charles becomes King, I know you will give him and his wife Camilla the same support that you have given me; and it is my sincere wish that, when that time comes, Camilla will be known as Queen Consort as she continues her own loyal service,” she said.
On 6 September, she confirmed Liz Truss as prime minister in Balmoral, Scotland and invited her to form a government. The ceremony was performed in Balmoral due to the Queen’s health.
Liz Truss [PHOTO CREDIT: @trussliz]In June, her platinum jubilee was celebrated all over the Commonwealth by the UK and other member states.
The queen was also captured holding various meetings and sending goodwill and condolence messages to different groups including Team GB women’s curling team and Brazil following the flooding in Petropolis.
Queen Elizabeth will be remembered among many things for the leadership she provided even as a young teenager. In 1940, as a 14-year-old, she made her first radio broadcast during the BBC’s Children’s Hour, addressing other children who had been evacuated from the cities because of the war.
She stated, “we are trying to do all we can to help our gallant sailors, soldiers, and airmen, and we are trying, too, to bear our own share of the danger and sadness of war. We know, every one of us, that in the end all will be well.”
Elizabeth appears to have lived up to the pledge she made on her 21st birthday where she pledged to be in the service of the people.
“I declare before you all that my whole life, whether it be long or short, shall be devoted to your service and the service of our great imperial family to which we all belong.”
Queen Elizabeth II born Elizabeth Alexandra Mary Windsor on 21 April, 1926. She was born in Mayfair, London, as the first child of the Duke and Duchess of York (later King George VI and Queen Elizabeth). She was delivered by Caesarean section at her maternal grandfather’s London house, Bruton Street, Mayfair. She was baptised by the Anglican Archbishop of York, Cosmo Gordon Lang, in the private chapel of Buckingham Palace on 29 May. She was named Elizabeth after her mother, Alexandra after her paternal grandfather’s mother, who had died six months before she was born, and Mary after her paternal grandmother.
She was called “Lilibet” by her close family, which was what she called herself at first. She shared a special bond with her grandfather, George V, which was credited for helping his recovery in 1929 when he was ill. Elizabeth called him “Grandpa England.
Elizabeth and her sister, Margaret, were educated at home under the supervision of their mother and their governess, Marion Crawford. Elizabeth received private tuition in constitutional history from Henry Marten, Vice-Provost of Eton College, and learned French from a succession of native-speaking governesses. A Girl Guides company, the 1st Buckingham Palace Company, was formed specifically so she could socialise with girls her own age. Later, she was enrolled as a Sea Ranger. Her father ascended the throne in 1936 upon the abdication of his brother, King Edward VIII, making Elizabeth the heir presumptive. She was educated privately at home and began to undertake public duties during the Second World War, serving in the Auxiliary Territorial Service. In November 1947, she married Philip Mountbatten, a former prince of Greece and Denmark, with whom she had four children: Charles, Prince of Wales; Anne, Princess Royal; Prince Andrew, Duke of York; and Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex.
Elizabeth ascended the throne at a relatively early age of 25 when her father died in February 1952. She became queen regnant of seven independent Commonwealth countries: the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Pakistan, and Ceylon, as well as Head of the Commonwealth.
Elizabeth reigned as a constitutional monarchy through major political changes such as the Troubles in Northern Ireland, devolution in the United Kingdom, the accession of the United Kingdom to the European Communities, the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the European Union, Canadian patriation, and the decolonisation of Africa.
Between 1956 and 1992, the number of her realms varied as territories gained independence, and as realms, including South Africa, Pakistan, and Ceylon (renamed Sri Lanka), became republics.
Her many visits and meetings include a state visit to the Republic of Ireland and visits to or from five popes. Significant events have included her coronation in 1953 and the celebrations of her Silver, Golden, and Diamond Jubilees in 1977, 2002, and 2012 respectively. In 2017, she became the first British monarch to reach a Sapphire Jubilee. Elizabeth lived and reigned the longest as a British monarch. She was the longest-serving female head of state in history. Throughout her reign, Elizabeth faced republican sentiment and criticism of the royal family, particularly after the breakdown of her children’s marriages, her annus horribilis in 1992, and the 1997 death of her former daughter-in-law Diana, Princess of Wales. However, support for the monarchy in the United Kingdom has been and remains consistently high, as does her personal popularity.
Elizabeth met her future husband, Prince Philip of Greece and Denmark, in 1934 and 1937. They were second cousins once removed through King Christian IX of Denmark and third cousins through Queen Victoria. After another meeting at the Royal Naval College in Dartmouth in July 1939, Elizabeth,13 at the time said she fell in love with Philip, and they began to exchange letters. She was 21 when their engagement was officially announced on 9 July 1947. The marriage took place in Westminster Abbey on November 20, 1947. On the eve of the wedding her father, the king, conferred upon the bridegroom the titles of duke of Edinburgh, earl of Merioneth, and Baron Greenwich. They took residence at Clarence House in London. On 9 April 2021, after 73 years of marriage, her husband died at the age of 99; many doubted if she would survive the death of her husband, Philip.
Death came late
For someone who death has come looking for about three times in her lifetime, this may also be referred to as a late shot. In 1981 during the Trooping the Colour ceremony, six weeks before the wedding of Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer, six shots were fired at the Queen from close range as she rode down The Mall, London, on her horse, Burmese. The police would later discover the shots fired were blank. However, the 17 year old, Marcus Sarjeant, who shot at the queen was sentenced to five years in prison and released after three. Her second face off with death happened in October, months after the first known attempt on her life. While on a visit to Dunedin, New Zealand, another 17 year old Christopher John Lewis fired a shot with a 22 rifle from the fifth floor of a building overlooking the parade, but missed. Lewis was arrested, but never charged with attempted murder or treason, and sentenced to three years in jail for unlawful possession and discharge of a firearm. Two years into his sentence, he attempted to escape a psychiatric hospital in order to assassinate Charles, who was visiting the country with Diana and their son Prince William. A third known attempt was recorded when the queen woke up to an intruder, Michael Fagan, in her bedroom at Buckingham Palace.