Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh prince consort to Queen Elizabeth II, died on Friday, April 9 at Windsor Castle.
Buckingham Palace announced his death via a statement in the afternoon.
“It is with deep sorrow that Her Majesty The Queen announces the death of her beloved husband,” the Palace said.
A notice was pinned to the palace gates, and the flag flew at half-mast to mark his death. The government later announced they would limit ministerial statements and media appearances for a period of mourning. Well-wishers can leave condolence messages for the royal family at their website. Statements from the royal family are also posted.
Prince Charles, the current Duke of Edinburgh, said his grandfather was an “extraordinary man,” and would want the royals to continue working.
“My grandfather was … part of an extraordinary generation. Catherine and I will continue to do what he would have wanted and will support The Queen in the years ahead,” Charles said. “I will miss my Grandpa, but I know he would want us to get on with the job.”
The prince went to King Edward VII’s hospital on Feb. 16 because of an infection unrelated to the coronavirus, later going to St. Bartholomew’s hospital for a heart procedure. He returned to King Edward VII’s hospital for a 28-day-long visit.
Elizabeth and Philip stayed at their Berkshire residence for most of the lockdown. The queen attended multiple virtual meetings to keep up with work in the meantime.
After years in the public eye, he retired from public life in May 2017 at the age of 95. He made occasional appearances since then, keeping up his image as a mostly remote royal.
However remote in public, Philip was hard at work within the palace. He was known for his efforts to push the monarchy into the modern age of media. According to NBC News, Philip was the first British royal to be part of a televised interview. According to the author of “Elizabeth: The Queen and the Crown” Sarah Gristwood, Philip played a huge role in bringing media to the monarchy.
“[The monarchy] wasn’t equipped to deal with a new media age, and Prince Philip played a huge role in moving it forward then,” Gristwood said.
Gristwood also said he helped shape the royal family to deal with the changes.
“He helped create the model of the British royal family that has enabled it to continue forward into the 21st century,” Gristwood said. “We may have lost sight of that now, but I hope we’ll remember him for it.”
Prime Minister Boris Johnson also said Philip helped the royal family progress.
“Like the expert carriage driver that he was, he helped to steer the royal family and the monarchy so that it remains an institution indisputably vital to the balance and happiness of our national life,” Johnson said.
The BBC’s royal correspondent Nicholas Witchell said Philip not only impacted the royal family but also the queen’s reign.
“It was the importance of the solidity of that relationship, of their marriage, that was so crucial to the success of her reign,” Witchell said.
He also said Philip was “utterly loyal in his belief in the importance of the role that the Queen was fulfilling – and in his duty to support her.”
Philip married Elizabeth on Nov. 20, 1947 as a 26-year-old veteran of World War II.
In a speech on their 50th wedding anniversary, Elizabeth called Philip her strength.
“He has, quite simply, been my strength and stay all these years, and I, and his whole family, and this and many other countries, owe him a debt greater than he would ever claim or we shall ever know,” Elizabeth said.
An article on the royal’s website called Philip a loving husband and father. He is succeeded by eight grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren.