Celebrating her legacy. Prince William and Princess Kate honored Queen Elizabeth II at her funeral on Monday, September 19, with Prince George, 9, and Princess Charlotte, 7, by their side.
William and Kate, both 40, walked alongside their two eldest children during the procession at Westminster Abbey. The Duke and Duchess of Cornwall also share son Prince Louis, 4, who did not attend the memorial service.
George and Charlotte, who arrived at the funeral alongside Queen Consort Camilla, walked in front of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle as the traditional event took place.
Ahead of the queen’s passing, Kate created a close bond with the late monarch over the years. Following William and Kate’s wedding in 2011, Elizabeth started to count on her granddaughter-in-law.
“More than anything, knowing she can rely on Kate and [William] to handle matters in her absence is the greatest comfort she could ask for,” a source told Us Weekly exclusively in August 2020, noting that Kate was a “rock” for the queen throughout the coronavirus pandemic.
According to the insider, Elizabeth’s faith in the couple grew when it came to their royal duties. “Her Majesty sees the Cambridges as the future of the monarchy and trusts Kate and William’s judgment implicitly,” the source added at the time. “Kate asks for advice about speeches she’s due to make, whom she can depend on most within the palace and protocol dos and don’ts. The queen’s more than happy to impart her wisdom — she’s proud to be Catherine’s go-to adviser about royal life.”
Earlier this year, William and Kate celebrated the queen during her Platinum Jubilee. Three months later, Elizabeth passed away at age 96 after being placed “under medical supervision” by her doctors. “The Queen died peacefully at Balmoral this afternoon,” the official statement from Buckingham Palace stated on September 8. “The King and The Queen Consort will remain at Balmoral this evening and will return to London tomorrow.”
William addressed his grandmother’s passing with a special message. “On Thursday, the world lost an extraordinary leader, whose commitment to the country, the Realms and the Commonwealth was absolute,” he shared via his and Kate’s joint Instagram account on September 10. “So much will be said in the days ahead about the meaning of her historic reign.”
He continued: “I, however, have lost a grandmother. And while I will grieve her loss, I also feel incredibly grateful. I have had the benefit of the queen’s wisdom and reassurance into my fifth decade.”
The royal reflected on the “memories” that his children will continue to have of the late queen. “She was by my side at my happiest moments and she was by my side during the saddest days of my life,” the statement added, noting that his wife had Elizabeth’s “guidance and support” over the years. “I knew this day would come, but it will be some time before the reality of life without Grannie will truly feel real.”
William noted his plans to “honor” his grandmother by “supporting” his father, King Charles III, as he begins his reign. The king, 73, for his part, announced during his ascension that William and Kate would receive new titles: Prince and Princess of Wales.
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