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Queen Elizabeth II dies at 96: Double rainbow appears over Buckingham Palace as mourners gather

Queen Elizabeth II, the longest-reigning British monarch, died at the age of 96 on Thursday

A double rainbow appeared over London  near Buckingham Palace and Elizabeth Tower on Thursday as crowds gathered to pay their respects to the Queen. 

Queen Elizabeth II, who ascended to the throne in 1952 and was England’s longest reigning British monarch, died at Balmoral Castle, her country estate in Scotland. 

A double rainbow is seen over Elizabeth Tower in Westminster, London, following a rain shower. Picture date: Thursday September 8, 2022.  (Ian West/PA Images via Getty Images)

Crowds started gathering at Buckingham Palace earlier on Thursday after the palace announced that the Queen’s doctors were “concerned for Her Majesty’s health.” 

The Queen celebrated a Platinum Jubilee in June to mark 70 years of service to the people of the United Kingdom, Realms and the Commonwealth.

Prince Charles, 73, automatically becomes the king, though his coronation might not take place for months. 

Prince Charles, Prince of Wales, Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Andrew, Duke of York watch a flypast from the balcony of Buckingham Palace during Trooping The Colour, the Queen’s annual birthday parade, on June 8, 2019 in London, England. (Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images)

“The death of my beloved Mother, Her Majesty The Queen, is a moment of the greatest sadness for me and all members of my family,” Charles said on Thursday. 

“I know her loss will be deeply felt throughout the country, the Realms and the Commonwealth, and by countless people around the world.”

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