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Queen Elizabeth II Passes Away at 96 Years Old

On September 8, 2022 England’s Queen Elizabeth II passed away at the age of 96. She served as Queen for 70 years. She took over for her father, King George VI in 1952 at the age of 25. At the time of her death, she was monarch of 15 countries. Now the ruler of England is Prince Charles.

She married Prince Phillip in 1947 and was married until his death in 2021. They had four children, Prince Andrew, Prince Edward, Princess Anne and Prince Charles. Eight grandchildren; Prince William and Prince Harry among them. And 12 great grandchildren. 

Let’s take a look back at some of the key moments during her reign, according to history.com.

First her coronation on June 2, 1953. This was the first one to be broadcast live on television. It was viewed in the United Kingdom by about 75% of the population, that is about 27 million people. 11 million more listened on the radio. And three million people lined the route back to Buckingham Palace where the Queen took her place.

In 1965 she took her first state visit to West Germany. This would be the first official visit by British royalty since 1913. During her 10-day visit she would help reconcile the two countries and recognize Germany’s rise back to the top as a force in Europe and the world. 

The mining disaster in Wales. October 21, 1966 an avalanche of mud, water and debris from a coal mine headed right for a school in a South Wales village, tragically killing 116 children and 28 adults. And while Prince Phillip showed up to help just day after, she delayed her appearance by a week fearing her being there would take away from the efforts to help restore. Those close to her claim she regrets not having gone there sooner.

In 1970 Queen Elizabeth II, Princess Ann and Prince Phillip were touring Australia and New Zealand. All of sudden the Queen decides to walk around and greet the people in person on the street rather than just smile and wave at them. This was the first time that was done, and now it is considered tradition to walkabout. 

The wedding of the century. Prince Charles married Princess Diana in 1981. This was estimated to be watched by 750 million people in 74 different countries. And while Diana may have been the People’s Princess, her marriage and relationship to the royal family was not in good shape.

Queen Elizabeth, in 1986, became the first British monarch to visit the Chinese mainland. She toured the Great Wall, the terracotta warriors in Xi’an and other landmarks the country had to offer. Despite her visit, it was her husband’s comments that stole the show, calling Beijing “ghastly” and telling British students they would get “slitty eyes” if they stayed too long.

Queen Elizabeth II and the horrible, terrible, no good year. In 1992 three of her children separated from their spouses and a fire broke out in Windsor Castle that destroyed more than 100 rooms. And on the 40th year of her succession she made the comment 1992 “has turned out to be an ‘Annus Horribilis.”” Which is Latin for “a horrible year.”

July of 2013 marked the first time since Victoria’s reign that three generations of direct heirs to the British throne were alive at the same time. This is due to Prince George being born to Prince William and Kate Middleton.

This year marks Queen Elizabeth’s Platinum Jubilee for serving 70 years on the throne. On June 2, there was a military parade featuring 1,400 troops, 240 horses, a flyover and an 82-gun salute. Elizabeth watched this all surrounded by her family from the balcony of Buckingham Palace. 

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