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THE TRAGIC DEATH OF QUEEN ELIZABETH II
By CALLIE MCGUIRE
Buckingham Palace announced the death of the 96-year-old Queen Elizabeth on September 8. A beloved world leader known for her service, Elizabeth celebrated 70 years on the British throne in 2022 and is the longest-reigning British monarch.
Elizabeth became monarch at the age of 25, after the premature death of her father, King George VI, on February 6, 1952. As the world mourns the queen's death, let's look back at her life and legacy.
Early Years
Queen Elizabeth II, born in 1926 to the Duke and Duchess of York, never expected to take the throne, as her uncle was the heir to the British throne. At first, her life was a relatively normal one, until her uncle, Edward VIII, abdicated the throne in 1936, and her father became king.
Service and duty
According to royal expert Tina Brown, Elizabeth remained “the representation of [...] stoic British ideals” throughout her reign. According to Kate Clements, the curator of the Imperial War Museum in London, “[Elizabeth] saw what her parents were doing to boost people's morale, and she learned from that the importance of duty.” In 2019, when the Queen was 93, she still did 67 public events.
Family Life
Queen Elizabeth and her third cousin Philip Mountbatten first crossed paths in 1939 when she was 13 and he was 18, becoming more serious after World War II ended, and marrying in November 1947. They had four children — Charles (born 1948), Anne (born 1950), Andrew (born 1960), and Edward (born 1964).
CONTROVERSY
Many thought the Queen showed a lack of emotional response to the death of Princess Diana, but she got back in the public’s good graces with a personal speech the day after Diana’s death. The other controversy involves Prince Andrew’s friendship with Jeffrey Epstein, which led to the Queen stripping him of his royal patronages and royal title.
HEALTH ISSUES
Queen Elizabeth II seemed superhuman at times, but the death of Prince Philip in April 2021 and various health problems took a toll on the monarch. She canceled a trip in October 2021, and tested positive for COVID in February of this year, going on to miss multiple events at her Platinum Jubilee.