Sad news has surfaced today out of Scottland, as Queen Elizabeth of England has passed away at the age of 96 years. She became the Queen of England in 1952 at the very young age of 25, when her father, King George VI passed away on February 6, 1952, at just 56 years old. Queen Elizabeth would later become the longest reigning British monarch in history, reigning for 7 decades. The queen celebrated her Platinum Jubilee (70 years as reigning monarch) on February 5, 2022. She knew that her time was short, and she spoke of her wishes for the time following her death. Now that time has come.
The family will not have to make any arrangements for her funeral, because everything has already been planned from the service to the grave, and even the timeframe. The only unknown, until now, was the date of the service, which will be held eleven days after her passing…on September 19, 2022. I think it is comforting when the deceased has already planned their own funeral. It is to their tastes and preferences, and there is no question as to their wishes. Queen Elizabeth’s funeral will be televised across the world, with the only restriction being that the royal family is not to be filmed. That makes sense. They need to be able to grieve privately.
The royal line of succession now changes, with Prince Charles becoming King Charles III (it was announced earlier). He has the right to change his name, but it appears that he won’t. Prince William is now first in line to the throne and takes on his father’s title of Prince of Wales. Duchess Camilla becomes Queen Consort, and Duchess Catherine becomes Princess of Wales. Prince George is second in line to the throne, followed by Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis. It is so strange to think of so many changes happening all at once, but that is how things work in the world of the monarchy. How people feel personally about any part of the changes really doesn’t matter, because they are what they are.
For the world, this is a sad day. It is the end of an era. Many people, including me, have never known a time when Queen Elizabeth II was not the queen. She began her reign four years before I was born. Queen Elizabeth II was much loved and well respected. She had a way of making people feel at ease. She had a very human type of nature, and really never presented herself as anything so special. She went out and shook the hands of the people, in what was deemed a “walkabout” like the Australians do. She considered her office one of service to the people, rather than a ruler over them. I’m sure that is why she was so loved by all. The end of her reign has brought much sadness to the world. Rest in peace Queen Elizabeth. You will be missed by so many people.
Coming from the house of Spencer, I have long known that Princess Diana was my distant cousin. Because of that, I have felt a bond of sorts with her sons, William and Harry, and with William’s wife, Catherine, or Kate as she will always be known, no matter what the Queen has decried. Yesterday, the royal couple, William and Kate have added a new member to our family…a baby boy. Of course, we don’t know his name yet, but I have my own ideas of what some good choices would be, and yes they, are in keeping with the British tradition of four names from the royal line, along with the possibility of some from Kate’s family. Like the rest of the world, I also, look forward with great anticipation to the announcement of the name of Prince…of Cambridge, as well as getting to see him for the first time.
I hear from friends and on television that many people think that there is too much hoopla over the Royals and that the people of the United States shouldn’t care about a baby in England, but I can’t help but be excited…because he is family, whether I ever get to meet him or not. I also suspect that there are many people in the United States who descend from the original four Spencer brothers who immigrated to the United States so long ago. Many people may not even know they are related. Sad for them, I say, because a baby…any baby is a wonderful thing. We get excited when a celebrity has a new baby, but somehow we are not supposed to with the Royals. Oh well, the choice is theirs. I choose to be very excited.
It is my hope that William and Kate will follow Diana’s parenting skills, because she did an amazing job with William and Harry, who are not stuffy like some other royals have been in the past. This baby boy is destined to be the King of England one day, and he should be loved by his people like his parents and uncle certainly are. The days and years that follow this royal birth will surely have William and Kate “seeing what the future brings” as William put it. I sincerely hope and fully believe that their future is very bright, and that this sweet little boy will bring them an extreme amount of joy, as will his future siblings.
I want to offer my congratulations to William and Kate and the rest of the royal family on this wonderful occasion. I can’t wait to hear your precious little boy’s name, and yes, I look forward to seeing his pictures in the future, because he is a special little boy, and I am honored to be his distant cousin.
With her marriage to Prince William, almost 2 years ago, Kate Middleton added another facet to my family’s connection to the British Monarchy. I had always known that I was related to Diana Spencer, who became the Princess Diana that we all know of and loved, and later I found out that my husbands family also has ties to Princess Diana. Now, I find that my son-in-law has ties to Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, or Kate as we all know her, even if the Queen hates it. Kevin’s grandmother’s maiden name was Hettie Middleton, and Kevin asked me if he might be related to Kate, when she and Prince William became engaged.
Now, we all quickly found out that Kate and William were actually distant cousins, as I have now also found out Bob and I are, and that tied her to my family and to Bob’s, but not to Kevin’s. I began researching Hettie Middleton’s background, and after a couple of hours, I had my answer. Indeed, Kevin is related to Kate Middleton, on his grandmother’s side, thereby adding another facet to the connection.
I know there are many people in the United States, who are related to the British Monarchy, and may be even more closely related than my family is, but having known about my British connections to the Monarchy and to Winston Spencer Churchill, has made me very aware of them throughout my life. I have always loved being related to them, but never more than with Princess Diana, who was so very special, and with William, Kate, and Harry, all of whom I consider wonderful people. William and Harry, and now Kate have managed to be so much more in touch with the people of England. The British Monarchy, like many monarchies, have always been known for a great degree of stuffiness. I have to credit that to their mother, Princess Diana who did her very best to teach them about the real world and those that they would someday be ruling over. I think she got that across quite well, in that they and Kate are much more comfortable talking to and being around the people of England, than any of the others.
Today Kate celebrates her 31st birthday, and this summer, she will give birth to the future King or Queen of England, and that will add yet another person to the connection that my family has to the British Monarchy. I am very excited for them, and I add my birthday wishes to Kate, as I’m sure many others around the world, do as well. Happy birthday Kate!! Have a wonderful day!!