Recap of Queen Elizabeth II
September 15, 2022 | View PDF
Queen Elizabeth passed away last week, Thursday, September 8, 2022, at 96. She was born on April 21, 1926, and had one sibling, a younger sister named Margaret, born August 21, 1930.
When ten, Elizabeth discovered she was next in line to inherit England’s throne, whenever her father, King George VI, would pass away. Eight-year-old Margaret asked Elizabeth, “Does this mean you have to be the next Queen?” Elizabeth replied, “Someday.” Margaret said, “Poor you.”
When a child, Elizabeth understood that her life was mapped out in front of her.
On November 20, 1947, when twenty-one, Elizabeth married Philip, and they had four children: Charles, Anne, Andrew, and Edward.
Her father, King George VI, passed away on February 6, 1952, and that same day her privy and executive councils named her Queen of England. At twenty-five, she ascended to the throne.
Her coronation though did not convene until June 2, 1953, and was held at Westminster Abbey, in London. At Prince Philip’s suggestion, it was televised, and millions across the world watched as the twenty-seven-year girl and mother was crowned Queen of England.
She marked her silver jubilee, after twenty-five years, in 1977; her golden jubilee, after fifty years, in 2002; and her platinum jubilee, after seventy years, on the first weekend in June 2022. She sat on England’s throne for seventy years, 214 days, the longest of any British monarch.
After the Queen passed forty years on the throne, she gave a remarkable speech on November 24, 1992, and said, “1992 is not a year on which I shall look back with undiluted pleasure. It has turned out to be an ‘Annus Horribilis.’” a Latin phrase meaning a “horrible year.” What was going on?
On Friday, November 20, 1992, a tragic fire broke out in Windsor Castle, her main residence, and destroyed 115 rooms. The fire had started when a spotlight had pressed against a curtain.
Beyond that, and more at home, in 1992, three of her oldest children’s marriages were unravelling: Charles and Diana, Anne and Mark Phillips, and Andrew and Sarah Ferguson.
Charles and Lady Diana had created a series of scandals that year when rumors surfaced that the two were not getting along, due to incompatibility and the twelve years age difference. She said, “He made me feel so inadequate in every possible way. Each time I came up for air, he pushed me down.”
Lady Diana charged Prince Charles with loving Camilla, a former girlfriend, more than herself. In light of Charles and Camilla’s long-term marriage after his and Diana’s 1996 divorce, that accusation may have been true.
Lady Diana said, “There were three of us in this marriage, so it was a bit crowded.”
On December 20, 1995, when the Queen had had enough of the tabloids and scandals, she wrote letters to her son and daughter-in-law, and advised them to divorce. It was finalized August 28, 1996, and a year later, on August 31, 1997, at 36, in a Paris tunnel, in a tragic car crash, Lady Diana died.
The nation wept.
Prince Anne divorced her first husband, Mark Phillips, in 1992; and in early 1992, after six years of marriage, Andrew and Sarah Ferguson legally separated. Their divorce was final four years later.
Further into that speech on November 24, 1992, the Queen said, “Criticism is good for people, but we are all part of the same fabric of our national society, and that scrutiny can be just as effective if it is made with a touch of gentleness, good humor, and understanding.”
A disgusting event occurred a decade before. At 7:15 a.m., on July 9, 1982, Michael Fagan, an Englishman with a checkered past, crawled over a wall at Buckingham Palace, climbed up a drainpipe, entered the Queen’s bedroom, and woke the Queen. Security arrived soon to escort Fagan out the door.
Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, passed away on April 9, 2021, at the age of 99, 62 days short of his 100th birthday.
During Elizabeth’s reign, 179 individuals served as her Commonwealth’s prime ministers, in places as far apart as Antigua and Barburda in the Caribbean, to Uganda in east Africa.
There were fifteen United Kingdom prime ministers, beginning with Winston Churchill in 1952, and ending with Liz Truss, the newest, who met the Queen at Balmoral Castle, in Scotland, on September 6, 2022, two days before the Queen’s passing.
Along the way, there was Margaret Thatcher, Tony Blair, Theresa May, and Boris Johnson.
The Queen knighted twenty seven Americans during her seventy-year rein, including: Bill and Melinda Gates, Angelina Jolie, Ralph Lauren, Steven Spielberg, Michael Bloomberg, George H. W. Bush, Ronald Reagan, Rudy Giuliani, Alan Greenspan, and Billy Graham.
Three world famous Englishmen also received that designation: Elton John, Mick Jagger, and Paul McCartney. That is why the former Beatle, in all due respect, is called Sir Paul McCartney.
A trivia question, “Queen Elizabeth’s last name?” Windsor, perhaps named after the castle.