Editorial Intern, PEOPLE
On Sept. 8, veteran BBC News anchor Huw Edwards delivered a shocking update to the people of the United Kingdom: Queen Elizabeth II had died.
As the news traveled the globe, Edwards, 61, was still processing the British monarch’s passing, as he had only found out himself around 10 seconds earlier.
"Usually, when you have a breaking news story there's a lot of shouting in your ear from the gallery, saying, 'Go to the news, go to the news,' but this time was different," he told The Radio Times.
"The announcement came up on the wires and the gallery said, 'The announcement is here. Take your time. Speak when you are ready.' "
To make matters worse, the Welsh journalist had his phone stolen ahead of the announcement and was out of reach as Buckingham Palace told the world that the Queen’s health was “causing concern” earlier in the day.
Speaking to The Times on Tuesday, he revealed that only discovered the news when he arrived at a barbershop for a 1 p.m. haircut and was told his son had left a message saying, "Go to work immediately."
As he later delivered real-time updates about the Queen's health to millions of viewers, he said he too experienced the emotions of the loss.
"I was sad," he told Radio Times. "It was the end of an era in British history, the end of a presence that has been with many people throughout their entire lives."
In the weeks that followed, Edwards continued covering the monarch’s passing and helmed all of the BBC’s coverage of her Sept. 19 funeral, during which he was “desperate not to make a terrible mistake,” he told The Radio Times.
He also had another woman to think about too: his own mother.
"My mum kept on messaging me saying, 'You look exhausted, there are huge bags under your eyes,' " said Edwards Tuesday.
In the wake of Queen Elizabeth’s death, the royal family has transitioned into new roles, with the Queen’s son King Charles inheriting the British throne. The day after his accession, King Charles pronounced wife Camilla as his Queen Consort, while Prince William and Kate Middleton became the Prince and Princess of Wales.
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“William’s years of being mentored by his grandmother and his father have really paid off because the transition to Prince of Wales has been seamless,” Katie Nicholl, author of The New Royals: Queen Elizabeth‘s Legacy and the Future of the Crown, told PEOPLE. “Kate has also effortlessly moved into a role with so much weight and history and is already making it her own.”
The royal couple made their first visit to Wales as Prince and Princess at the end of the royal mourning period and are already making strides.
"While they have both taken on new titles and more senior roles within the royal hierarchy, they have done so while staying very true to who they are and the causes they have championed," Nicholl added.
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BBC News Anchor Says He Only Learned of Queen Elizabeth's Death 10 Seconds Before Telling U.K. – PEOPLE
Editorial Intern, PEOPLE