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Queen Elizabeth marks 95th birthday amid ‘period of great sadness’

The U.K.’s Queen Elizabeth II is expressing her gratitude as she turns 95 less than a week after her husband Prince Philip’s funeral.

On Wednesday, her 95th birthday, the queen said “my family and I would like to thank you all for the support and kindness shown to us in recent days” after a small funeral for Philip was held over the weekend, per NBC News. Philip died earlier this month at the age of 99; he and Elizabeth had been married since 1947.

“While as a family we are in a period of great sadness, it has been a comfort to us all to see and to hear the tributes paid to my husband,” the queen said, adding that “we have been deeply touched, and continue to be reminded that Philip had such an extraordinary impact on countless people throughout his life.”

The queen also said “I very much appreciate” the “many messages of good wishes” she has received on her birthday. According to Buckingham Palace, she will remain at Windsor Castle as the period of mourning for Philip continues, and NBC News reports there is “no public plan to mark her birthday” this year both due Philip’s death and the pandemic.

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Prince Harry, the queen’s grandson, had returned to the U.K. for the first time since stepping back from the royal family for Philip’s funeral, and there had been some reports that he might stay for the queen’s birthday. But The Daily Mail reports Harry has now arrived back in California, as he wanted to get home to his wife, Meghan Markle, who was advised against traveling to the funeral due to her pregnancy.