Queen Elizabeth's Pony Wore A Sentimental Item To The Funeral Processions

As the world continues to mourn the heartbreaking death of Queen Elizabeth II, many heartwarming memories are being shared, as well. The sovereign was known for her wise reign and her steady presence in the midst of world crises, but she was just as well known for her devotion to her husband and family, her sense of duty, her enjoyment of country living, and her love of animals. 

The queen was particularly devoted to her dogs, and it's crushing to think of her corgis mourning her loss. Animal expert John Smith told the Daily Mail that her two dogs may exhibit signs of loss by becoming anxious, whining, and changing their eating and sleeping habits. Even the bees in the royal hives are considered members of the queen's family, and in a time-honored tradition, they were told of her death, per The New York Times.

Queen Elizabeth was also famed for being a skilled horsewoman. Defying doctors' orders, she was last seen on one of her Fell ponies at Windsor just three months before her death at age 96, per The Sun. She owned hundreds of racehorses in her lifetime, and only missed attending the Royal Ascot race twice in the 70 years of her reign, per Sky News. Once in 2020 at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, and again in 2022 as she became less able to stand for long periods.

Appropriately, the queen's funeral day included a beautiful and poignant moment featuring her most beloved mount.

The queen's favorite pony had a special addition to her saddle

Of all Queen Elizabeth's many horses, her favorite at the time of her death was Carltonlima Emma, a beautiful black Fell pony. Fells are an old breed of working horse native to the mountain regions of northern England, explains the Fell Pony Society. While the queen's racehorses brought her pleasure and plenty of money, The Sun reports that Emma gave her much more. During the lockdown period of the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic, the queen was unable to see her family or attend royal engagements. Riding Emma every morning was a way of fighting loneliness and establishing normality. 

It was only fitting, then, that Emma should somehow take part in the queen's elaborate funeral ceremony. Although she wasn't eligible to be part of the mounted military procession, the royal Stud Groom, Terry Pendry, brought her out to the side of the flower-strewn road where the funeral cortège passed by. As a special personal touch, Pendry draped one of the queen's own headscarves over Emma's saddle, according to the Daily Mail. Her Majesty was especially keen on wearing silk scarves — Hermès was a favorite designer — when riding or at horse races. Remarkably, Emma also appeared to lift or stamp her foot just as the hearse passed by.

That moment broke Twitter's collective hearts. One tweeted, "Beautifully poignant moment and immaculately turned out...you did Her Majesty proud, little one."