David Beckham joined the mile-long line to pay his respects to Queen Elizabeth II. The English athlete jumped in line in the middle of the night to view the Queen’s coffin in London’s Westminster Hall.
“I thought coming at 2am would make it a little quieter – I was wrong,” he joked to Sky News, later adding: “It’s special to be here.”
Queen Elizabeth II died in Scotland on September 8. She was 96.
“I grew up in a royalist household and that’s how I was raised. If my grandparents had been here today, I know they would have wanted to be here,” explains Beckham. “So I’m here on their behalf and on behalf of my family and of course to celebrate with everyone else here.”
The soccer star knew that the day the Queen passed away “would always be difficult.”
“It’s hard for the nation, it’s hard for everyone around the world because I think everyone feels it. Our thoughts are with the family and of course everyone here today,” he said.
One thing Beckham enjoyed while waiting in line was hearing “the different stories” people had to say about the British monarch. The former England captain said he was “very lucky” to meet the Queen “many times” during his career. In 2003 he received an OBE for Services to Football. OBE stands for Officer of the Order of the British Empire. Beckham said it was his “most special” moment with the Queen.
“I took my grandparents, who really raised me to be a huge royalist and a fan of the royal family, so to have them there…and of course I had my wife there too. To step to get my honor , but also Her Majesty, to ask questions, to talk, I was so lucky to have a few moments like that in my life, to be around Her Majesty,” Beckham said.
“It’s a sad day, but it’s a day for us to remember the incredible legacy she left behind,” he added. “Everyone wants to be here to be a part of this experience and celebrate what Her Majesty has done for us.”
After 13 hours, Beckham finally viewed Queen Elizabeth II’s coffin. Sky News reported that he was in tears after the special moment. Looks like he got in just in time. On Friday, the British government urged people not to queue as the five-mile line is full. Monday morning, the day of the state funeral, the coffin will be moved.
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