Queen Elizabeth is set to turn 95 on Wednesday, but this year, she will be celebrating it very differently in the wake of the death of her beloved husband Prince Philip, who passed away earlier this month at the age of 99.
People Magazine reported that while the Queen and the rest of the royal family typically celebrate their birthdays by sharing new portraits with the public, no photo will be released this year. The Queen’s birthday is likely to be a somber one, as it will be her first without her husband of 73 years.
It has been speculated that Prince Harry, who traveled back to the United Kingdom from his California home for the first time in over a year for Philip’s funeral last week, will be extending his trip to stay for his grandmother’s birthday.
The Queen’s birthday will also be different this year because the Trooping the Colour, which is typically held in June to celebrate her birthday, has been cancelled for the second year in a row due to COVID-19. Palace officials are looking into a possible scaled-down celebration of the Queen’s birthday that would likely take place in the quadrangle at Windsor Castle, just like it did last year. It remains to be seen whether the Queen will be joined by her family for this, if it does indeed happen.
Those close to the Queen have said that despite her immense grief over Philip’s death, she will not be stepping down from the throne.
“Her family will step up and be by her side, but she will carry on. She understands that she has a job to do, and [Philip] would have wanted her to crack on. She did do so when he retired from public life,” one senior aide said, with a royal insider adding, “She will never abdicate because of duty and honor and public service is so deep in her, as it was for him.”
The Queen had to sit alone at Philip’s funeral last Saturday due to COVID-19, and she was seen wiping away tears from her eyes at times. Please join us in saying a prayer for her during this difficult time.