The death of Her Majesty the Queen of England has left people around the world in mourning. But understandably, her family is most affected.
The Queen leaves behind four children. And while mothers always claim to have no favourites, the Queen always seemed to have a soft spot for one of her children…
The Queen had four children with her husband Prince Philip. Her firstborn, who is now king, was Charles, followed by Princess Anne, Prince Andrew and finally Prince Edward.
The Queen’s last born child, Edward, was born at 8:20 p.m. on March 10, 1964. He was the Queen’s lightest baby in terms of weight with a weight of 2.5 kilos. This was the first birth of a child of his own that Prince Philip himself attended, making the occasion all the more historic.
Queen Elizabeth was 37 years old at the time of Prince Edward’s birth and she had asked Prince Philip to attend. The Duke of Edinburgh had complied with his wife’s request and even held her hand as she went into labor in the delivery room.
It was during her fourth pregnancy that the Queen had read magazines that suggested the importance of a father’s involvement in the life and birth of his children. She was intrigued by the idea and decided to implement it in her life with the birth of her next and last child. This also made history because in the past royal births were not attended by fathers.
With the birth of her first three children, the monarch found it difficult to combine work and motherhood. And as much as she would have liked to be there for her children, she often had to leave them in the care of nannies while she performed her royal duties.
But things changed with the birth of Edward, Earl of Wessex, when she had been queen for over ten years. She was better able to combine her duties as a queen and her job as a mother, and thus had more time to be the latter.
So Edward had a much closer relationship with his parents than his older siblings. It was reported that the Duke of Edinburgh was also particularly fond of his youngest, as he entrusted him with the responsibility of Award scheme of the Duke of Edinburgh.
Prince Edward’s childhood was also much more exciting than that of his older siblings. The young prince even had the opportunity to meet Neil Armstrong, the first man on the moon, after which he was inspired and said he wanted to pursue a career as an astronaut too!
After completing his schooling at Gordonstoun School, the young prince took a gap year. In the gap year, he started working as a junior master and tutor at Wanganui Collegiate School in New Zealand. He later attended Jesus College, graduating in 1986.
Edward decided to join the Royal Marines for a while, but dropped out halfway through the year-long introductory course. He wasn’t a fan of the grueling physical training it took.
Instead, the young prince took a completely different direction in his career and pursued a career in the theater. In doing so, he became the first person in the royal family to embark on a career in entertainment. He founded Ardent Productions in 1993, but the company was unsuccessful, so the prince returned to his royal duties full-time.
Prince Edward met Sophie Rhys-Jones in 1987 at Capital Radio. At the time the prince was dating her friend, the two had never even thought of ending up together.
But in 1993 they met again at a charity event and sparks flew. The couple started dating and the prince made things official by taking Sophie as his plus-one to important official events.
After witnessing the failed marriages of his older siblings – Charles to Princess Diana, Andrew to Sarah Ferguson and Anne to Mark Phillips – Prince Edward was more aware of his decision to marry. He deliberated for a while, and finally in 1999 he made up his mind.
The prince announced his engagement to Sophie in January 1999. He proposed to her with a beautiful Asprey and Garrard white gold ring with a two-carat oval diamond and two heart-shaped gemstones on either side.
They married in the summer of the same year in a small ceremony with no military involvement. On the occasion of their wedding, the Queen presented Sophie with a tiara made from pieces from her jewelry collection.
After his marriage, the prince qualified for the title of duke, which is the highest rank according to the British system of peerage. However, he declined the title and chose to become an earl instead.
During their marriage of more than two decades, the couple has welcomed two children. Their daughter Louise Alice Elizabeth Mary Mountbatten-Windsor and son James Alexander Philip Theo Mountbatten-Windsor, both were born at Frimley Park Hospital in Surrey.
Lady Louise is said to have been the Queen’s favorite grandchild. And her mother Sophie, the favorite daughter-in-law.
Sophie, the Countess of Wessex, was closest to the Queen. After the Duke of Edinburgh passed away, she made sure to visit her mother-in-law every other day and make sure she was well.
Royal reporter Duncan Larcombe said: “Sophie Wessex has emerged as the Queen’s unlikely ‘rock’ as the monarch adjusted to life without Prince Philip. Prince Edward’s wife has made it her personal mission – according to sources – to ensure that Her Majesty is fully supported by the family.”
Edward and Sophie also live near Buckingham Palace and often stopped by to see the Queen.
Earlier in the day of her death, Sophie and Edward arrived at Balmoral Castle, where the Queen was, concerned for her health. With Charles becoming king, Edward is expected to help with royal duties as well.
After the death of the Queen, the royal family has to go through a pretty rough time. Our hearts go out to all who mourn the death of the Queen.
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