Today, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II celebrates her 95th birthday, and the first in over 73 years that she’ll celebrate without her Prince, Philip.
The royal family officially released a statement from Her Majesty, stating: “I have, on the occasion of my 95th birthday today, received many messages of good wishes, which I very much appreciate. While as a family we are in a period of great sadness, it has been a comfort to us all to see and to hear the tributes paid to my husband, from those within the United Kingdom, the Commonwealth and around the world.”
She continued, “My family and I would like to thank you all for the support and kindness shown to us in recent days. We have been deeply touched, and continue to be reminded that Philip had such an extraordinary impact on countless people throughout his life.”
Reports indicate that the Queen will likely have a small, private day, with, perhaps, visits from members of her family. Some expected to pay their respects include Anne, The Princess Royal, and the Wessex family, with maybe the Cambridge’s, Prince Charles and Andrew able to visit as well. Though, apparently, these visits would be conducted outside.
The one family member who won’t be there is Prince Harry, who arrived back in LA yesterday afternoon. He apparently came in on American Airlines and immediately was absconded back to his Montecito mansion with his pregnant wife, Meghan, and son Archie.
There were hopes that he would spend a little bit more time and visit the Queen for her birthday. The shortness of his visit likely reflects the still tense relationships between family members and his desire to return to his pregnant wife, who is likely in her third trimester.
In a surprise visit, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge visited the Air Cadets, of whom the Duchess is patron, in honor of Prince Philip. The Duchess had inherited the patronage from The Prince in 2015.
In a Twitter post, Kensington Palace wrote, “Paying tribute to His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh, who served as Air Commodore-in-Chief of the Air Cadets for 63 years…Today The Duke and Duchess visited @282ATC, which supports its @aircadets to gain skills and qualifications across a variety of different disciplines, before speaking to a number of the young people who are preparing for their Duke of Edinburgh Awards.”
They also recognized Queen Elizabeth’s birthday by sharing a picture and the official Royal Family’s post, which simply announced the day and that the Queen would be spending the quietly, still in mourning.