Two days following the Sept. 11 attacks in 2001, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II ordered the daily ceremonial parade to break a 600-year tradition to show solidarity with America in its time of great loss.
Behind the gates of Buckingham Palace, for the first and only time in United Kingdom history, at the request of the Queen, the Coldstream guards were ordered to play The Star-Spangled Banner.
Over 3,000 people watched the 45-minute ceremony at Buckingham Palace, including hundreds of Americans who were overseas during the attacks.
For hundreds of years, the Bands of the Household Division had only played a mix of traditional British songs of nationalism.
The only other time that foreign national anthems are played is when foreign dignitaries come to Buckingham Palace for state visits.
The Queen had also attended a ceremony honoring the lives lost during the Sept. 11 attacks at St Paul’s Cathedral, where the Star-Spangled Banner was once again played.
The Queen then reportedly had teary eyes while singing along.
In 2010, on her first visit to New York City since 1976, she visited the World Trade site and toured the memorial as it was being finished.
Queen Elizabeth II died on Sept. 7, 2022, at the age of 96. She was Queen for 70 years at the time of her death.