Queen Elizabeth II of England has died following health challenges on Thursday. Buckingham Palace announced that the queen died peacefully at Balmoral Castle.
Her death, the CNN said, brings to a close a reign that spanned seven decades and made her the most recognized woman in the world.
Elizabeth ascended to the throne in 1952, after the death of her father, King George VI. She oversaw the last throes of the British empire, weathered global upheaval and domestic scandal, and dramatically modernized the monarchy.
She died at Balmoral Castle in Scotland after doctors said they had become concerned about her health on Thursday.
Elizabeth ruled over the United Kingdom and 14 other Commonwealth realms and became one of the most recognizable women ever to have lived. Her son, Charles, immediately became King upon her death.
Charles, as the queen’s eldest son, inherits the sovereign title and job as head of the Commonwealth, along with other assets such as land and property.
Charles, 73, has waited decades to become king and is the longest-serving heir in British history. He is the eldest of four children born to the queen and her late husband Prince Philips.
When his mother assumed the throne at age 25, he became Britain’s heir apparent at age 3. Charles’s titles include Prince of Wales, Duke of Cornwall, Duke of Rothesay and Earl of Carrick.(N)
Prince Charles is now king.
It is a moment that the United Kingdom has been bracing for, with an elaborate plan for “Operation London Bridge” mapping out what happens next. But it comes as a shock all the same.
The royal family said in a statement: “The Queen died peacefully at Balmoral this afternoon.
The King and The Queen Consort will remain at Balmoral this evening and will return to London tomorrow.”
The queen planned for her succession for some time — and Charles increasingly took on more royal duties as her health worsened.
White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre was about to end her briefing Thursday when reporters informed her of the queen’s death.
“Okay. All right. Well, so that’s been confirmed?” a visibly shocked Jean-Pierre said as reporters read her the notification. “As I said earlier, you know, our hearts and our thoughts go to the family members of the queen, to the people of the United Kingdom.”
Jean-Pierre said she did not want to “get ahead of what the president is going to say.”