Prince Philip spent final days with his 'Lilibet', didn't fuss about pain and wanted to 'die in his own bed'
The Queen reportedly by Prince Philip's bedside when he breathed his last at Windsor Castle on Friday, April 9. His frail condition worsened overnight on Thursday and royal insiders had warned he was 'gravely ill'. Even in his recent fragile state, the Queen and Prince Philip were reportedly able to spend several joyful moments together.
The Duke of Edinburgh was being treated for an infection and a pre-existing heart condition. Sources say his death was sudden and unexpected, but peaceful as he was in the company of his dear 'Lilibet'. According to Telegraph, he wanted to die 'in his own bed' and 'on his own terms'. His presence was especially a source of strength, over the last few months as the royal family battled so much emotional upheaval. In his final days, the Duke of Edinburgh slept most of the time, but there were still moments in which his brave, no-nonsense approach still shone through, reports the Daily Mail.
One such incident was when he dropped his reading glasses, reports the Daily Mail. A footman in attendance leapt forward to pick them up. But the Duke of Edinburgh insisted on doing it himself and bending down to the floor. Timetables which are normally adhered to like clockwork in the royal household, were changed to suit the Duke's changing needs. He no longer took his 7:30 am morning tea, and while the food was sent up, he often had no appetite. Prince Philip, in his characteristic way, insisted on being as independent as possible, and not fussing about the pain he was in.
On the days when he felt strong enough to venture out of his room, the Duke still insisted on being as presentable as he always was, dressed in a shirt and jumper, pressed trousers and polished shoes. On warm days he asked for a chair to be taken outside and he would sit in the sunshine with a rug over his legs, added the report.
Walking was difficult for Prince Philip at the end, but staff were wary of suggesting that they push him in a wheelchair. When the Duke first saw a wheelchair in the private rooms, reportedly said, "Get that bloody thing out of my sight!"
He may have been fine using a stick to walk around his own apartment, but till the end he hated to betray any sign of frailty. He still continued to dress himself and even till quite lately spoke to family and friends on the phone, though he was not a fan of Zoom calls.
Fans of Prince Philip and of course the royal family are of course devastated, that Prince Philip didn't make it to his landmark 100th birthday, for which a grand celebration was planned. But for those who know Prince Philip best, the best gift at the end of his life was possibly to pass away peacefully in his own bed, surrounded by those he loved.
One of the Duke's only wishes was not to die in a hospital and it seems that the Queen ensured that wish was honoured. When the Duke's health worsened overnight on Thursday insiders say any talk of admitting Prince Philip to hospital, was reportedly quickly dismissed by the Queen. His wish was to spend the last hours at Windsor Castle where his mother Princess Alice, a great-granddaughter of Queen Victoria, was born, reports the Daily Mail.
It was not just the Queen who managed to spend many warm moments with Prince Philip in his final days. Reportedly the relationship between Prince Charles and Prince Philip had never been warmer. Sources close to Prince Charles say that he is 'comforted' by the fact that he and his father had been in touch more regularly than ever in the recent weeks and months. The Prince of Wales, drove from his Highgrove Estate in Gloucestershire to the Queen's Berkshire residence, ahead of the public announcement of the Duke's passing. Prince Andrew and Prince Edward arrived at the Royal Lodge on the Windsor estate, to be with their devastated mother. Prince Harry is expected to fly back for his grandfather's funeral, but it is unclear if wife Meghan will join him.