3 Heartbreaking Similarities Between Queen Elizabeth II and Princess Diana’s Funeral

Millions of people around the world watched the funeral of Queen Elizabeth II on Sept. 19, 2022. The late monarch‘s service took place 25 years after people across the globe watched Princess Diana’s funeral.

Although there were many differences between their funerals–Diana’s was not a state funeral like the queen’s–there were a few similarities as well that just might make you shed a tear.

(Top) Queen Elizabeth's coffin being carried into Westminster, (Bottom) Princess Diana's coffin being from Westminster Abbey
(Top): Queen Elizabeth’s coffin being carried into Westminster | Christopher Furlong/Getty Images, (Bottom) Princess Diana’s coffin being from Westminster Abbey | Jeff Overs/BBC News & Current Affairs via Getty Images

Family members walked in processions behind the coffins

Anyone who saw Princess Diana’s funeral will remember that her two sons, Prince William and Prince Harry who were just 15 and 12 at the time, walked in a public procession behind their mother’s casket. The two men were called on to do that again in a series of processions for their grandmother.

The now-Prince of Wales revealed during a walkabout in Sandringham that the gun carriage procession, which he participated in days before the queen’s funeral, brought back the painful memories of when he walked through the streets of London behind Diana’s coffin.

“He said how difficult it was … and how it reminded him of his mum’s funeral,” mourner Jane Wells told The Telegraph. “Catherine said it’s just been such a difficult time for all of them, for the whole family.”

King Charles III and Prince William walk behind the coffin of Queen Elizabeth II
King Charles III and Prince William walk behind the coffin of Queen Elizabeth II | Aaron Chown – WPA Pool/Getty Images

William previously shared his feelings about what it was like having to walk behind his mother’s coffin on the day of her funeral.

“It was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done,” he recalled in the documentary Diana, 7 Days. William added that he used his long bangs as a kind of “safety blanket” hoping others couldn’t see his face. “I felt if I looked at the floor and my hair came down over my face no one could see me,” he explained.

The future king also said that he had to find the balance between “me being Prince William and having to do my bit, versus the private William who just wanted to go into a room and cry, who’d lost his mother.”

Prince William walks with his head bowed behind the coffin of his mother
Prince William walks with his head lowered behind the coffin of his mother | ULLI MICHEL/AFP via Getty Images)

Both funerals services were at the same church

Queen Elizabeth’s funeral service was at Westminster Abbey.

That’s where members of the royal family gathered countless times for weddings and services of Thanksgiving. It’s the same Gothic church where the late queen married Prince Philip in 1947 and where her coronation took place in 1953.

But the Abbey is also where Princess Diana’s funeral service was held on Sept. 6, 1997.

Sons left notes for their mothers on the caskets

The coffin of Princess Diana with flowers and a card on top from Prince Harry
The coffin of Princess Diana with flowers and a card on top from Prince Harry | Ken Goff/Getty Images

Another similarity is that cards could be seen atop the coffins of the royal family matriarch and the People’s Princess.

A letter left on Diana’s casket was from Prince Harry and had the word “Mummy” written across it.

A handwritten note among the wreath on the queen’s casket was from King Charles and read: “In loving and devoted memory. Charles R.”

The coffin of Queen Elizabeth II, draped in the Royal Standard with the Imperial State Crown, flowers, and a card from Charles
The coffin of Queen Elizabeth II draped in the Royal Standard with the Imperial State Crown, flowers, and a card from Charles | PHIL NOBLE/POOL/AFP via Getty Images

Each service was attended by 2,000 mourners and was watched by billions from all corners of the globe.

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