The book, written by Robert Jobson and called Our King, details how the monarch spent his final hours as a prince. Mr Jobson wrote how he was flown to Balmoral on September 8 and spent several hours by the late Queen’s bedside.
As there was reportedly “no immediate reason for alarm”, the King returned to his estate on Royal Deeside to go for walk in the surrounding woods. Mr Jobson added that the monarch brought “a walking cane and basket” with him.
The book, serialised in the Mail on Sunday, read: “After spending a few hours with his mother, the Prince returned to Birkhall, his nearby estate on Royal Deeside. His intention? A walk in the surrounding woods, armed with a walking cane and a basket.
“As the Queen’s life ebbed away, her heir was foraging for mushrooms. More importantly, he was drawing solace and strength from the trees, the smell of the earth and the murmur of the River Muick.”
Mr Jobson added that Charles’ protection officers hung back to give him “some privacy” during these crucial moments, the Mirror reports.
During the walk, Charles was informed that the Queen’s health was deteriorating and he was flown to Balmoral to join Princess Anne, Camilla, and the Queen’s doctor, GP James Glass; he arrived before she died at 3.10pm.
As news of her death spread, other senior members of the Royal Family flew to Balmoral including Prince William, Prince Harry, Prince Andrew, Prince Edward, and Princess Sophie.
While many of the senior royals arrived at around 5pm, Harry arrived at around 8pm; by complete coincidence, he had been in the middle of a tour of the UK and Germany.
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Following her death, there was great speculation about the Queen’s cause of death.
According to her death certificate, the monarch died of “old age”. However, some have suggested the monarch may have died from cancer.
Others have suggested that Queen Elizabeth II may have died from Broken Heart Syndrome (BHS). Although a broken heart is considered to be a metaphorical state associated with the end of a relationship, it is a recognised condition.
Also known as stress-induced cardiomyopathy, the condition can have a significant impact on the body; it isn’t fatal, but one expert said it could have been a contributing factor to the Queen’s death.
Dr Deb Cohen-Jones said: “There is no strict science around it. But it’s definitely an observed phenomenon. It’s more about losing your ‘will’ than it is about your health in some ways.” Dr Cohen-Jones said the Queen may have developed BHS after the death of her husband, Prince Philip in 2021.
Dr Cohen-Jones said: “From a psychological point of view, the loss of Prince Philip would have caused her severe stress, peaking her cortisol elves, and leaving her body to deal with that.”
Cortisol is the body released by the body when it is stressed. In high enough concentrations, the chemical can damage the body and increase someone’s risk of health problems.
Alongside BHS, grief can also have an impact on the body. Heart surgeon Nikki Stamp said: “What we know is that for someone people the stress of losing a loved one, or any kind of stressful event in your life, does precipitate a whole bunch of reactions in the physical body as well as in your mind that can cause disease and sometimes cause someone to pass away.”
Her Majesty’s ex-footman Paul Burrell said the Queen “sorely, desperately missed” Prince Philip.
Although it is not suggested grief caused the Queen’s death, it could have affected the monarch if not physically, then psychologically in the final months of her life.
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