Queen Elizabeth II was a monarch and a mother, but her list of special titles didn’t stop there. 

To a lucky group, she was affectionately known as Granny. A grandmother to eight and great-grandmother to another 12, Queen Elizabeth II’s legacy extends far beyond the four kids she welcomed with late husband Prince PhilipPrince Charles, Princess AnnePrince Andrew and Prince Edward. As the world mourns the death of the longest-reigning British monarch, who passed away on Sept. 8 at 96 years old after 70 years on the throne, the bond she shared with the next generations of her family has not gone unnoticed. 

The tributes pouring in echo many of the comments her grandkids have shared publicly about her over the years, including future king Prince William, who previously hailed her courage for taking on the role of a lifetime nearly seven decades ago. 

“At the time, she was a woman in a man’s world stepping into what everyone thought…only a man could do. I think she really carved her own way in that sense and produced an incredible amount of courage to do the job and to step up to the plate,” William told Katie Couric in 2012. “She’s not let herself or anyone down in the process. There’s such scrutiny on the job that I think you have to be very, very careful how you carve your path, but she’s done it brilliantly.”

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