Prince Philip, the husband of Queen Elizabeth II and the longest-serving British consort, has died at the age of 99 years old.
On Friday, Buckingham Palace released a statement announcing his death.
The Duke of Edinburgh had a successful career in the British Royal Navy where he saw active service in the Second World War. He was the patron of more than 780 organizations and he was involved in hundreds of charitable endeavours.
His most prominent role, however, was that of a dedicated husband who supported his wife as she served as head of the Commonwealth since 1952.
Together, the couple raised four children and have eight grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren.
Born the Prince of Greece and Denmark on June 10 1921, Prince Philip had a tumultuous childhood.
Although he was born in Greece, Prince Philip’s family had to flee the country when he was only 18 months old in 1922. His uncle, the King of Greece, Constantine I, had been forced to abdicate in the aftermath of the Greco-Turkish War and the family feared for their safety.
Prince Philip’s uncle King George V ordered a British Royal Navy ship to collect them and the baby prince was carried to safety in a makeshift cot constructed from an orange box.
The family settled in the south of France until his parents’ separation in 1930. Prince Philip’s father moved to Monte Carlo with his mistress and his mother was diagnosed with schizophrenia during this time. She was later institutionalized in Germany.
During this period, the prince’s four older sisters married German noblemen and moved to Germany to be with them.
As for the nine-year-old prince, he was sent to England to be raised by his maternal grandmother Victoria Mountbatten, the Marchioness of Milford Haven. Over the next nine years, he attended several boarding schools in England, Germany, and Scotland before graduating in 1939.
The young prince grew accustomed to his unsettled life as he moved from home to home, royal biographer Hugo Vickers said.
In November 1947, Prince Phillip and Princess Elizabeth were married in Westminster Abbey in a ceremony attended by 2,000 guests and broadcast by BBC Radio to 200 million listeners around the world.
Five years later, when King George VI died at the age of 57 and a 25-year-old Elizabeth II ascended the throne, Prince Philip’s life changed forever. He gave up his professional naval career to accompany the Queen in her new public role and he would spend the next 69 years as a constant presence by her side.
On Feb. 17, 2021, the 99-year-old royal was admitted to the private King Edward VII Hospital in London as a “precautionary measure” after feeling unwell, according to Buckingham Palace. Nearly two weeks later, he was transferred to a specialized hospital in London to undergo testing and observation for a pre-existing heart condition.
In early March, Prince Philip underwent a procedure for that pre-existing heart condition at a London hospital.
Nearly two weeks later, he returned to Windsor Castle.
Prince Philip was the longest-serving British consort and he and the Queen became the first couple in the Royal Family to celebrate their diamond wedding or 60th anniversary.
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