For her millions of subjects across the United Kingdom, Queen Elizabeth II existed in rarified air. For her granddaughters Princess Beatrice and Princess Eugenie, however — who jointly eulogized the late royal Saturday in an Instagram post — she was simply, “Grannie.”
“Our dearest Grannie,” the statement on Princess Eugenie’s Instagram page began. “We’ve not been able to put much into words since you left us all. There have been tears and laughter, silences and chatter, hugs and loneliness, and a collective loss for you, our beloved Queen and our beloved Grannie.”
They went on to express gratitude for all the lessons she taught them and pointed out they have memories with her that they will treasure for the rest of their lives.
“We, like many, thought you’d be here forever,” they continued. “And we all miss you terribly. You were our matriarch, our guide, our loving hand on our backs leading us through this world. You taught us so much and we will cherish those lessons and memories forever.”
Queen Elizabeth II died at 96 years of age on Sept. 8 at her Scottish residence of Balmoral. She currently lies in state at Westminster Hall and will be transported to Westminster Abbey in preparation for her state funeral on Monday, according to the U.K. government.
“For now dear Grannie, all we want to say is thank you,” her granddaughters wrote. “Thank you for making us laugh, for including us, for picking heather and raspberries, for marching soldiers, for our teas, for comfort, for joy.”
“You, being you, will never know the impact you have had on our family and so many people around the world,” they continued. “The world mourns you and the tributes would really make you smile. They are all too true of the remarkable leader you are.”
The two royals certainly have a point, as figures including former President Barack Obama, Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, pop legend Elton John and Harry Styles have all publicly shared their condolences.
The arguably most endearing tribute, however, consists of countless mourning Brits spending hours and often entire days queuing in miles-long lines to personally pay their respects to the queen at Westminster Hall. Even celebrities, from David Beckham to Tilda Swinton, have been spotted.
“We’re so happy you’re back with grandpa,” the princesses wrote. “Goodbye dear grannie, it has been the honor of our lives to have been your granddaughters and we’re so very proud of you. We know that dear Uncle Charles, the King, will continue to lead in your example as he too has dedicated his life to service.
“God save the King.”