Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, the man who stood by The Queen’s side for 73 years, sadly passed away on Friday9 April at Windsor Castel, aged 99. Following the news of The Duke of Edinburgh’s death, A-Choices magazine offered the following words of condolence: “ We are saddened by the death of His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh and profoundly grateful for his extraordinary service to the nation over so many years. We extend our heartfelt sympathy to Her Majesty The Queen and the Royal Family.
His Royal Highness was born on 10th June 1921 in Corfu where his parents , Prince Andrew of Greece and Princess Alice of Battenburg , had fled to avoid political upheaval. Prince Philip studied at Gordonstoun School in Scotland, where the emphasis was on self-reliance, and at the age of 18, he attended the Royal Naval College in Dartmouth. Soon after his first meeting with his distant cousin, the young Princess Elizabeth, Britain was ta war and Philip had taken his first naval posting. He had a distinguished war record, being mentioned in dispatches for his service during the Battle of Matapan, and became a senior naval officer.
After the war, he became a frequent visitor to Buckingham Palace and in the summer of 1946, he proposed marriage . In 1947, when Philip became a British citizen, his engagement to Princess Elizabeth was announced . The wedding , which did so much to lift post -war spirits, took place in the same year , and in November 1948 Princess Elizabeth gave birth to Prince Charles.
Witty, intelligent and fiercely inquisitive, it was Philip who did much to help the Royal Family transition to a more relaxed age. He was a passionate and knowledgeable environmentalist, a proponent of the new technological age and determined to find a way to help young people from all backgrounds develop self-reliance, confidence and a sense of duty and self-worth. He founded The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award scheme in 1956, which now operates across the world, and was patron of 800 organisations and a very active president of the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF).
Prince Philip learnt to fly , was a beautiful cricketer and a skillful polo player , sailed , enjoyed wildlife photography, painted and took up the sport of carriage riding to compete at international level. Above all, he was the most extraordinary consort to The Queen and, as she said herself on the occasion of their Golden Wedding in 1997, Prince Philip” has , quite simply, been my strength and stay all these years” It is with great sadness I write this tribute of the death of His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh. He was a true statesman who serve his country with dedication and distinction. He will be long remembered and sadly missed. R.I.P.
Author: Gbenga Teejay Okunlola