“You know it will happen, but you are never really ready,” said Princess Anne in an emotional statement about her father’s death.
The four children of Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh and Queen Elizabeth II paid moving tributes to their father this weekend after the Duke’s death.
“You know it’s going to happen, but you’re never really ready,” said the couple’s second oldest child and only daughter, Princess Anne, in a statement released on Sunday. “My father was my teacher, my supporter, and my critic, but mostly it’s his example of a well-lived life and free ministry that I wanted to emulate.”
The Duke, the longest reigning royal consort in British history, “peacefully” died on Friday at the age of 99, the royal family said. His death occurred a few weeks after he was released from the hospital where he had been treated for an infection and operated on for a pre-existing heart condition.
“I want to emphasize how much the family values the messages and memories of so many people whose lives he also touched,” Anne said in the statement. “We will miss him, but he leaves a legacy that can inspire us all.”
Prince Andrew, Prince Edward and Edward’s wife Sophie, Countess of Wessex, spoke to the British press on Sunday after visiting the church at the Royal Chapel of All Saints in Windsor.
Andrew, the third of the couple’s four children, said the duke’s death “brought home” [him] not only [their] Loss “but the loss of those whose loved ones died during the coronavirus pandemic.
“He was a remarkable man,” said Andrew. “We almost lost the nation’s grandfather. And I am very sorry and I support my mother who feels it, I think, probably more than anyone else.”
Andrew, who has resigned from public royal duties after examining his ties to Jeffrey Epstein, said the queen described the loss of her husband of more than 70 years as “leaving a great void in her life.”
Edward, the youngest of the four, said of his father’s death, “As much as you try to prepare, it’s still a terrible shock.”
Prince Charles shared his feelings in a public address on Saturday, describing his father as “a very special person who, in my opinion, would have been amazed most of all by the reaction and touching things that were said about him.”
“We are, my family, deeply grateful for all of this,” said Charles. “It will support us in this particular loss and in this particularly sad time.”
Buckingham Palace officials announced on Saturday that the prince’s funeral will take place in a small ceremony on Saturday at St. George’s Chapel in Windsor Castle.
Prince Harry will be flying to the UK to attend the funeral, but his wife Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, will stay in the US because she is late in pregnancy.