WORLD NEWS

Queen recalls ‘familiar laugh missing’ in Christmas speech

Dec 25, 2021, 6:59 PM | Updated: 7:01 pm
Queen Elizabeth II records her annual Christmas broadcast in the White Drawing Room at Windsor Cast...
Queen Elizabeth II records her annual Christmas broadcast in the White Drawing Room at Windsor Castle on December 23, 2021 in Windsor, England. The photograph on the desk is of The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh, taken in 2007 at Broadlands, Hampshire, to mark their Diamond Wedding Anniversary. (Photo by Victoria Jones - Pool/Getty Images)
(Photo by Victoria Jones - Pool/Getty Images)

LONDON (AP) — Queen Elizabeth II in her Christmas Day message shared the pain she felt after the death of her husband as she encouraged people everywhere to celebrate with friends and family, despite the grief caused by the ongoing pandemic.

Saying she understood the difficulty of spending the holiday season “with one familiar laugh missing,” the monarch delivered her address beside a framed photograph of her arm-in-arm with Prince Philip, who died in April at age 99. On her right shoulder was the same sapphire chrysanthemum brooch she wore in the photo — a glittering statement pin that she also wore as a newlywed.

“Although it’s a time of great happiness and good cheer for many, Christmas can be hard for those who have lost loved ones,’’ the queen said in the prerecorded message broadcast when many British families were enjoying their traditional Christmas dinner. “This year, especially, I understand why.’’

This festive season is the first since the monarch said goodbye to her husband of more than 70 years in a service in St. George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle. Coronavirus restrictions in place at the time meant that the queen sat alone — a poignant reminder of how she would spend her life going forward.

Despite her own loss, the queen said her family was a “source of great happiness, noting that she had welcomed four great-grandchildren this year.

“While COVID again means we can’t celebrate quite as we may have wished, we can still enjoy the many happy traditions, be it the singing of carols — as long as the tune is well known — decorating the tree, giving and receiving presents or watching a favorite film where we already know the ending,” she said. “It’s no surprise that families so often treasure their Christmas routines.”

As the highly transmissible omicron coronavirus variant spreads rapidly across there U.K., the 95-year-old queen has decided not to spend Christmas at Sandringham, the royal estate in eastern England where she traditionally spends the festive season with family. The palace said Monday that the queen would spend the holidays at Windsor Castle, west of London, where she has remained throughout most of the pandemic.

She will be joined by some members of her family, including Prince Charles and his wife, the Duchess of Cornwall.

The annual Christmas message to the people of the U.K. and the Commonwealth marks the end of a busy and sometimes difficult year for the queen.

Philip died in April, just two months shy of his 100th birthday, after spending weeks in the hospital. Buckingham Palace announced this week that she had agreed to stage a service of thanksgiving for his life in the spring.

The monarch has had health issues of her own, cutting down on travel and work since spending a night in the hospital in October and being told to rest by her doctors. Since then, she has undertaken light duties including virtual audiences with diplomats and weekly conversations with the prime minister.

In June, she made an appearance at the Group of Seven summit in Cornwall, and in November she gave a recorded address to the U.N. Climate Talks in Glasgow.

In closing her Christmas message, the queen noted that the holiday is often seen as a time for children. But, she said, this is “only half the story.’’

“Perhaps it’s truer to say that Christmas can speak to the child within us all. Adults, when weighed down with worries, sometimes fail to see the joy in simple things where children do not. And for me and my family, even with one familiar laugh missing this year, there will be joy in Christmas.’’

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

World News

In this photo provided by the Ukrainian Defence Ministry Press Office on Thursday, July 7, 2022, Uk...
JAMEY KEATEN and NOMAAN MERCHANT, Associated Press

US intel chief thinking ‘optimistically’ for Ukraine forces

The head of U.S. intelligence says Russia’s war against Ukraine is running at a “reduced tempo” and suggests Ukrainian forces may have the upper hand in coming months.
1 day ago
General view during the 2022 Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony at Rockefeller Cen...
CNN

Christmas vacations: 15 of the best places to go for holiday spirit

From Finland to Mexico, these 15 destinations around the world traditionally offer up some of the best holiday atmosphere for a Christmas-themed vacation.
1 day ago
NAAMA tatoo removal studio is seen in London....
Zoe Sottile, CNN

This tattoo removal studio will laser off your Kanye West tattoo for free

A London tattoo studio removal studio is offering free removal of Kanye West tattoos as the artist continues to openly promote antisemitism and praise Adolf Hitler.
1 day ago
An artist's life reconstruction of the bird-like Cretaceous Period dinosaur Natovenator polydontus,...
Zoe Sottile, CNN

A new species of dinosaur might have dived like a duck to catch its prey

A new study found evidence at least one species of dinosaur may have been an adept swimmer, diving into the water like a duck to hunt its prey.
1 day ago
KIEV, UKRAINE - APRIL 26: People attend a commemoration of the 30th anniversary of the Chernobyl nu...
DAVID McHUGH, AP Business Writer

EXPLAINER: Can Ukraine pay for war without wrecking economy?

Ukraine has won victories on the battlefield against Russia but faces a looming challenge on the economic front.
2 days ago
Camels resting at a spot for tourists to go on rides in the desert on seen ahead of the FIFA World ...
NNE M. PETERSON AP Sports Writer

Camel pageant is among World Cup’s sidelines attractions

The camel batted her eyelashes and flashed a toothy smile for the television cameras at the Mzayen World Cup. The camel pageant was being held in the Qatari desert about 15 miles (25 kilometers) away from Doha and soccer's World Cup. The pageant is a cross between the Westminster Dog Show and the Miss America Pageant. The winner was Nazaa'a is a majestic light-haired creature that overcame several preliminary rounds and hundreds of other camels to win the pageant at Qatar Camel Mzayen Club on Friday.
2 days ago

Sponsored Articles

house with for rent sign posted...
Chase Harrington, president and COO of Entrata

Top 5 reasons you may want to consider apartment life over owning a home

There are many benefits of renting that can be overshadowed by the allure of buying a home. Here are five reasons why renting might be right for you.
Festive kitchen in Christmas decorations. Christmas dining room....
Lighting Design

6 Holiday Decor Trends to Try in 2022

We've rounded out the top 6 holiday decor trends for 2022 so you can be ahead of the game before you start shopping. 
Happy diverse college or university students are having fun on their graduation day...
BYU MBA at the Marriott School of Business

How to choose what MBA program is right for you: Take this quiz before you apply!

Wondering what MBA program is right for you? Take this quiz before you apply to see if it will help you meet your goals.
Diverse Group of Energetic Professionals Team Meeting in Modern Office: Brainstorming IT Programmer...
Les Olson

Don’t let a ransomware attack get you down | Protect your workplace today with cyber insurance

Business owners and operators should be on guard to protect their workplace. Cyber insurance can protect you from online attacks.
Hand turning a thermostat knob to increase savings by decreasing energy consumption. Composite imag...
Lighting Design

5 Lighting Tips to Save Energy and Money in Your Home

Advances in lighting technology make it easier to use smart features to cut costs. Read for tips to save energy by using different lighting strategies in your home.
Portrait of smiling practitioner with multi-ethnic senior people...
Summit Vista

How retirement communities help with healthy aging

There are many benefits that retirement communities contribute to healthy aging. Learn more about how it can enhance your life, or the life of your loved ones.
Queen recalls ‘familiar laugh missing’ in Christmas speech