Speed Reads

quick appearance

King Charles, Prince William visit those in line for the queen

Britain's King Charles III and Prince William on Saturday made a surprise visit to those waiting in long lines to pay their respects to the late Queen Elizabeth II, who died earlier this month at the age of 96, BBC News reports.

The pair took time to thank those who had queued overnight, and even offered notes of encouragement to anyone still roughing it: "You're over halfway," the prince told one young girl. "I hope you didn't get too frozen," Charles said elsewhere, in reference to last night's drop in temperature.

The king later left for Buckingham Palace after about 20 minutes, while the prince stayed a bit longer, according to BBC News.

As of roughly 11 a.m. ET Saturday, the queue time was around 16.5 hours, "with the line stretching five miles along the Thames to Southwark Park."

Thousands of mourners (including soccer star David Beckham) have endured painfully long lines over the last few days in hopes of visiting the queen's coffin, which will lie in state in Westminster Hall until her funeral on Monday.