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Inside Death Hoaxes about Queen Elizabeth Including Claim She Stopped Breathing in 2021 While William Cried

Laura Beatham
Feb 24, 2022
09:10 A.M.
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With Queen Elizabeth II being such a prominent figure in the UK, it's understandable that the government, the Monarchy, and the media already know what will happen when she passes. 

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Queen Elizabeth II is arguably one of the most recognizable UK figures globally. So with her ongoing age of 95we34 and her notoriety, it is no wonder fake news about her gets spread around the world so often. 

One of the biggest rumors that seem to pop up at least once a year is that Her Majesty The Queen has died. This year's death hoax has already started and was sparked by a blog called Hollywood Unlocked. 

Queen Elizabeth II at the Royal Windsor Horse Show 2021, Windsor, England [Left] Prince William during a week long visit to Scotland, 2021 [Right] | Source: Getty Images

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On February 22, 2022, the blog reported on Instagram that a source close to the Royal Palace notified the outlet exclusively with word that the Queen had passed away. 

According to Hollywood Unlocked's Instagram post, which the platform marked as fake 43444, Queen Elizabeth was allegedly scheduled to attend the wedding of Edward Enninful, British Vogue editor, but officials found her dead. 

Hollywood Unlocked's CEO, Jason Lee, spoke to Buzzfeed News and said he felt confident to report Her Majesty's death after a wedding guest of Enninful spoke directly to him. 

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According to the sources, another wedding guest close to the Queen received a phone call and then reacted emotionally to a few people, who were allegedly informed about what had happened. Lee stated:

"I would never post something like this if the person that told me, I did not trust. "

The hoax came hours after Buckingham Palace revealed the Queen had tested positive for COVID-19, a few days after Charles, Prince of Wales, and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, tested positive. The Palace said the Queen experienced a few mild flu-like symptoms.

However, the following day, the Palace announced the Queen resumed her appointments and scheduled meetings from afar, including keeping her weekly schedule conversation with the UK Prime Minister via the phone on February 23.

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The Monarchy has faced multiple death hoaxes after the past few years. Last October, speculation of her death rose after the Queen spent time in hospital. 

One Facebook user even shared a video titled, "Breathing stopped: William cried a lot, British's Queen Elizabeth d-e-ad at age 95." The video was shared around 4,000 times in less than a week. However, the claims were false. 

The Palace did not share reasons for her hospital stay with the public. However, doctors advised her to rest, and witnesses spotted her using a cane while attending a service at Westminster Abbey, London. 

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In December 2019, rumors again sparked that the Queen had died after a screenshot of a WhatsApp conversation between a "Gibbo" and "Ricey" that contained an apparent memo to the Royal Guards, stating the Queen had passed, made the rounds on social media. 

A few royal fans fell for the prank, which led royal experts to step in and clear the misunderstanding. Charlie Proctor, the editor of Royal Central, tweeted, "I see we have reached that time of the year where I have to dispel rumors of HM's Passing. The Queen is not dead."

Then in 2017, Twitter became the culprit for the spreading of the rumors that Queen Elizabeth II died as the hashtag #mediablackout landed on the platform's trending page. The explanation was that the media was allegedly blacking out because she had died. 

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The Queen had been ill at the time and missed the Christmas service. With the power of social media, a bad cold turned into a rumor. The rumor had a significant impact as it turned into a politically-motivated campaign aimed at news organizations, particularly BBC. 

In 2015, a rehearsal on how the BBC will act when the Queen passes away ended in an apology as one of their journalists mistakenly tweeted that the Monarch had passed away. 

Ahmen Khawaja, a reporter from BBC's Urdu-language service, posted on the platform that the then-89-year-old was in the hospital. Later she posted a second tweet that said the Queen had died. 

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It is unclear how the mistake happened. However, the broadcaster was staging an internal drill to examine its readiness for the Queen's death. Both Khawaja and the BBC shared apologetic statements. A spokesperson said at the time:

"During a technical rehearsal for an obituary, tweets were mistakenly sent from the account of a BBC journalist ... The tweets were swiftly deleted and we apologize for any offence."

As obscure as it is to think about, many media companies have media plans, campaigns, and obituaries ready to go for when the 95-year-old Monarch does pass away.

The UK government and Buckingham Palace already know exactly what will happen and what protocols to follow when she does pass, and it goes much further than knowing Prince Charles will become King.

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Elle Magazine compiled an insightful list of what exactly will happen when the Queen passes, starting with the Palace releasing a brief bulletin leading up to the Queen's death about whether it is expected to happen soon or is related to an illness. 

Reportedly, after her death, her senior doctor, gastroenterologist Professor Huw Thomas, would join her and be in charge of who sees her and when the announcement of her death should be made. 

Sir Christopher Geidt, the Queen's private secretary, would inform the Prime Minister of her death. While "London Bridge" would be used by officials to announce her death to other officials. Civil servants will be expected to say "London Bridge is down" on secure lines. 

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Regarding the public, an announcement will first go to the Press Association, the global news agency, and the rest of the world's media simultaneously. Allegedly a footman will also walk out of the Palace and pin a black edge notice to the gates.  

Flags will fly at half-mast in the UK, and a 12-day mourning period will follow the day she passes. Her body will be moved, and preparations for her funeral will begin. Her coffin will lay in rest for four days at Westminster Hall.

If COVID-19 restrictions are listed, then it is likely the Queen would have a state funeral held at Westminster Abbey. It would include a procession through London and Windsor and a national-wide two minutes of silence.  

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