On March 30, 2002, the much-loved Queen Mother died peacefully in her sleep with Queen Elizabeth by her side.
It is indeed a sombre day for Queen Elizabeth
The emotional anniversary comes as Queen Elizabeth is presently self-isolating with her husband Prince Philip at Windsor Castle. Currently, the Queen Mother holds the record of longest-living royal in royal family history.
She was a very much-loved public figure. The Queen mother had seen the country through two world wars and many years of subsequent difficulty and change. She was born as Elizabeth Angela Marguerite Bowes-Lyon in London on August 4, 1900, to Lord and Lady Glamis. She spent much of her youth at Glamis Castle in Scotland.
Also read: Queen Elizabeth reveals why Princess Anne never went to university.
The Queen mother met her future husband, Prince Albert, at a dance in 1920. The marriage took place at Westminster Abbey in April 1923 and had two children, Princess Elizabeth, now the Queen, and Princess Margaret.
On December 12 1936, her husband was crowned the King after the abdication crisis of King Edward VIII. At that time, she became the first British-born Queen Consort since Tudor times. Not to forget she was a pillar of strength to him and also to the country. Known for fun-loving attitude and sense of duty (she was still carrying out public engagements in the last months of her life, despite illness), she was a source of comfort to the nation always.
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Buckingham Palace announced the sad news on 30th March 2002: “The Queen, with the greatest sadness, has asked for the following announcement to be made immediately: her beloved mother, Queen Elizabeth, died peacefully in her sleep this afternoon at Royal Lodge, Windsor. Members of the royal family have been informed.”
At her funeral on April 9, 2002, over one million people stood for hours in the freezing cold to pay their respects to the Queen Mother. In an interesting event during the Second World War, it was suggested that the then-Queen should evacuate to Canada or North America where she would be safe from the brutal blitz bombings.
The Queen mother gave a famous reply: “The children won’t go without me. I won’t leave the King. And the King will never leave.” When Buckingham Palace was bombed, she endeared herself to the working-class people of London further by saying: “I am almost glad we have been bombed, now I feel I can look the East End in the face.”
The Queen mother really enjoyed fishing and horse-racing. She was also famous for her love of gin. The gin would mix with Dubonnet for a lunchtime tipple, a tradition continued by the Queen today.
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