The Duke of Edinburgh would like family members to ‘get down to business’, Prince William said, as he and his brother paid tribute to a ‘grandfather’ and ‘an extraordinary man’.
Prince Harry, who flew from California to attend Saturday’s ceremonial royal funeral, described Philip as “the barbecue master, joke legend and cheeky to the end”.
He said his grandfather was going to say right away, beer in hand, “’Oh, keep going!’ ‘
The Duke of Cambridge shared a private photo of his great-grandfather with then-two-year-old Prince George riding in the box of a horse-drawn carriage. The photograph was taken by the Duchess of Cambridge in Norfolk in 2015.
The brothers released separate statements within half an hour of each other, with protocol dictating that William was released first.
The funeral for Philip, who died at the age of 99 on Friday, will bring them together in public for the first time in a year in which relations have grown strained, especially following the explosive interview with Harry and Meghan with Oprah Winfrey.
Separated by the Atlantic since their last public meeting in Commonwealth Day service in March 2020, the two will be separated by a social distance of 2 meters as they walk behind the coffin in an eight-minute procession behind the walls of the Windsor Castle before the funeral service. at St George’s Chapel.
In his statement, William said: “My grandfather’s century of life was defined by service – to his country and the Commonwealth, to his wife and queen, and to our family.
“I feel fortunate to have not only had his example to guide me, but also his enduring presence in my own adult life – both in good times and in tough days. I will always be grateful that my wife had so many years to know my grandfather and for the kindness he showed her.
“I will never take for granted the special memories my children will always have of their great-grandfather who picked them up in his car and seeing for themselves his contagious sense of adventure as well as his mischievous sense of humor. .
“My grandfather was an extraordinary man and was part of an extraordinary generation. Catherine and I will continue to do what he wanted and we will support the Queen for years to come. I will miss my grandfather, but I know he would like us to continue our work.
Harry, who has arrived in the UK, is staying at Frogmore Cottage in Windsor, where he observes Covid-19 protocols. He said in his statement: “My grandfather was a man of service, honor and great humor. He was authentically himself, with a very sharp wit, and could hold the attention of any room because of his charm – and also because you never knew what he might say next.
“He will be remembered as the oldest reigning husband of the monarch, a decorated soldier, a prince and a duke. But for me, like many of you who have lost a loved one or grandparent to the pain of the past year, he was my grandfather: barbecue master, joke legend and cheeky until at the end.
“He has been a rock to Her Majesty The Queen with unparalleled dedication, by her side for 73 years of marriage, and while I could go on, I know for now he would tell us all, beer in hand. , ‘Oh go ahead!
“So on that note, Grandpa, thank you for your service, your dedication to Granny and for always being yourself.” You will be sorely missed, but you will always be remembered – by the nation and the world. Meghan, Archie and I (and your future great-granddaughter) will always hold a special place in our hearts for you.
“’By the sea, by Terram.’ “
While preparations were underway for Saturday’s service, House of Commons MPs paid formal tributes to the Duke.
Downing Street said it was too early to consider proposals for a lasting memorial to his life.
The prime minister’s official spokesperson said all proposals would be carefully considered but “it is not fair, as we are in this period of mourning” to consider a memorial.
“There will be a time to rightly consider longer-term tributes,” the spokesperson said. Suggested ideas include changing the name of the Royal Naval College at Dartmouth, where the Duke first met the Queen.