David Beckham joined the public to pay his respects to Queen Elizabeth II at Westminster Hall on Friday.
The football legend waited more than 12 hours in line, and chatted with ITV about why it was important to him to be there.
“I grew up in a household of royalists and I was brought up that way so, you know, if my grandparents would have been here today I know that they would have wanted to be here, so I’m here on their behalf and on behalf of my family and, obviously, just to celebrate with everybody else here.”
Speaking of the loss, Beckham said, “I think it will take a long time to understand that because I think that Her Majesty meant so much in so many different ways.”
David said, “I was able to meet her through my career and I was very lucky… This day was always going to be difficult, and it’s difficult for the nation, difficult for everyone around the world, because I think everyone is feeling it and our thoughts are with the family.”
He also shared his favorite memory, saying, “Probably the most special moment for me was when I received my OBE (Order of the British Empire)… I took my grandparents with me who were the ones that really, you know, brought me up to be a huge royalist.”
Beckham called it a “sad day,” but also “a day for us to remember the incredible legacy that she’s left.”
When asked if he was struck by the queue of people, he said, “I thought by coming at 2 a.m. it was going to be a little bit quieter. I was wrong. Everybody had that in mind.”
The Queen will lie in state at Westminster Hall until Monday’s funeral. On the morning of the funeral, the coffin will be taken to Westminster Abbey in a procession that starts at 10:44 a.m. local time.
Queen Elizabeth II died last week at the age of 96 at Balmoral Castle in Scotland.