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Britain Mourns 'Queen Mum' - 2002-03-31


Members of Britain's royal family gathered at Windsor to mourn the mother of Queen Elizabeth II. The Queen Mother died on Saturday at the age of 101.

Inside Windsor's impressive walls, the royals are grieving. It is their time to mourn in private. Here outside the front gate, a few hundred ordinary Britons have gathered to pay their respects to the woman known affectionately as the "Queen Mum," the grandmother to the nation. "I am really upset. Really, really upset," said one. "She has been around for so long, everybody identified with her whether you are young or been through the war, really old." "It is always sad to lose a beloved person and she was very popular and even abroad, even in other countries. So, it was very sad to hear," said another.

Among visitors from overseas was a couple from Pennsylvania, in the United States. "I am sure it was expected, but it is still something to be somber about," one said. "It was very crowded and somber." That feeling is reflected in the cold, gray skies above.

Britain is now officially in mourning for the next nine days. The British flag is flying at half-staff atop all public buildings in the country.

Next week, the Queen Mother's coffin will be moved to Westminster Hall in the heart of London where she will lie in state. It is there where many members of the public will pay their final respects.

Following the funeral, her body will be returned to Windsor Castle where she will be laid to rest next to her husband, King George VI, in St. George's chapel.

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