King Charles III Looks ‘Gravely Sick’ On His First Public Appearance Since Being Diagnosed With Cancer

Apr 02, 2024 by apost team

The last few years have been momentous for the British monarchy, culminating in the tragic passing of Britain’s longest-reigning monarch, Queen Elizabeth II, on Sept. 8, 2022, at Balmoral Castle. It was a devastating day for the royal family as many members gathered to be by her side in her final moments. 

That same day, Elizabeth’s eldest son, King Charles III, ascended the throne. One day later, he addressed the United Kingdom as its new monarch. And less than two years since, the royal family was again hit with tragic news when Buckingham Palace revealed Charles had been diagnosed with cancer on Feb. 5, 2024.

Charles broke with tradition several times in his youth, attending school instead of being privately tutored, as was the norm for the royal family at the time. He also became the first royal to earn a university degree at Trinity College, Cambridge, where he studied archaeology and anthropology. He later joined the Royal Air Force after becoming the Prince of Wales and Earl of Chester in July 1958.  

Charles’ personal life has been a hot topic for decades, particularly since his marriage to Princess Diana and subsequent divorce. However, he has worked hard to put his name in a good light, supporting several non-profit organizations. Charles is also interested in topics such as the environment, global sustainability, youth opportunities, and education.

His efforts culminated in the tide of public favor turning his way in the years since he became king, leading to an outpouring of shock and devastation when news of his ill health became public. Since being diagnosed with cancer, Charles hasn’t faced the public until his Easter appearance. Read on to learn more about Charles’ health troubles and how his first public appearance since his troubling diagnosis was publicized. 

Prince Charles, Prince of Wales, Diana, Princess of Wales, Prince William (date not given), (Tim Graham/Tim Graham Photo Library via Getty Images)

Early 2024 saw King Charles III facing some serious health issues. Buckingham Palace first announced on Jan. 17, 2024, that the monarch was scheduled to undergo treatment the following week in the hospital for an enlarged prostate. The next day, his wife, Queen Camilla, revealed Charles was feeling “fine” and “looking forward to getting back to work.” 

On Jan. 26, 2024, Charles was admitted to the London Clinic, where he underwent the treatment. He stayed for three nights before being discharged. However, the Palace announced that all his prior engagements would be postponed to allow him sufficient time to rest and recuperate. In the following days, Camilla again stated that Charles had been “doing his best” since the treatment before the pair made their first public appearance together on Feb. 4, 2024, at Sandringham Church. There, Charles gave the crowd a reassuring wave, raising the people’s spirits. However, the consolation would be short-lived as the next day, Buckingham Palace released devastating news.

It revealed that, during Charles’ prostate treatment, “diagnostic tests have identified a form of cancer,” while stressing it was not prostate cancer. It said the king had “commenced a schedule of regular treatments” while his public-facing duties were postponed on the advice of his doctors. However, the 75-year-old monarch would “continue to undertake State business and official paperwork as usual,” it added.

But even as the Palace stated Charles remained “wholly positive about his treatment and looks forward to returning to full public duty as soon as possible,” speculation about who could stand in for the King should he be unable to fulfill his duties had already begun. It was widely reported that Charles could choose deputies from a possible total of seven royals, should his ill health force him to.

King Charles III (2024), (Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images)

Under a constitutional mechanism, should the King be unable to carry out his official duties as sovereign on “a temporary basis due to illness or absence abroad,” two or more Counsellors of State – comprising the monarch’s spouse and the next four people in the line of succession – can act in His Majesty’s place. 

In Charles’ case, this would then include his wife, Queen Camilla, his sons Prince William and Prince Harry, his brother Prince Andrew, and his niece, Princess Beatrice. However, both Prince Harry – who moved to the United States with his wife, Meghan Markle – and Prince Andrew – who was linked to the notorious sex offender Jeffrey Epstein – are not considered working royals. Speculation has also roped in the next two senior royal family members as potential candidates to act in Charles’ stead. They are his siblings, Princess Royal Anne and Prince Edward

While the Counsellors of State can undertake certain duties, such as attending Privy Council meetings, signing routine documents and receiving the credentials of new ambassadors, they are barred from fulfilling key tasks of the monarch, such as those concerning Commonwealth matters, the dissolving of Parliament (except on the King’s express instruction), the creation of peers or the appointment of a prime minister.

However, even as the speculation continued, Charles remained in good spirits in the early days of his diagnosis. He unexpectedly kept the public in the loop of his health troubles, behavior that seems in keeping with his reputation for being a down-to-earth monarch. This was also evident in the Palace’s statement in which Charles’ reasons for doing so were presented. It read:

“His Majesty has chosen to share his diagnosis to prevent speculation and in the hope it may assist public understanding for all those around the world who are affected by cancer.”

King Charles III (2024), (Samir Hussein - Handout/Getty Images Entertainment via Getty Images)

As news of Charles’ health issues surfaced, the public took to social media to support the ailing monarch, offering prayers and words of encouragement. 

“Very encouraging to see the King out of hospital and looking so well,” one user commented on a clip of Charles stepping out at Sandringham Church for the first time after his hospital stay.

“Glad to see His Majesty did well. Also deep gratitude for raising prostrate (sic) awareness. Not only for being checked for benign prostate enlargement, but in checking for that, may also find in some men, a tumor of the prostate. Probably will save some lives too,” another remarked.

Comments also flooded the royal family’s official Instagram account, with many wishing the King well during this difficult time.

“What a wonderful man! Thinking of others during this terrible time for him personally. He is without doubt a monarch we can be proud of. God save the King,” one comment read, while another wished him “a quick return to health and many more happy years on the throne.”

Many wished the “wonderful king and human being” a speedy recovery. They praised him for his “strength and honesty” in being transparent about his health issues, saying this would “make a difference to so many.” 

Another user said, “Get well soon, Your Majesty. The whole country is rooting for you!”

Others also took the opportunity to offer their best wishes to Catherine, the Princess of Wales, who underwent abdominal surgery at the same hospital as the King during his prostate treatment.

“Wishing king Charles and Princess Catherine a speedy recovery. God Save The King and Catherine of Wales,” one comment read.

Kensington Palace stated Catherine’s procedure was “planned” and “successful,” but would keep her from her public duties temporarily as she recuperated.

King Charles (2023), (Chris Jackson/Chris Jackson Collection via Getty Images)

However, on March 18, 2024, social media was rocked by supposed news that Charles had passed. Users took to their social media accounts in search of verification of the reports.

“KING CHARLES IS DEAD???” one user exclaimed.

The source of the information appeared to be Russian media news channels. Social media accounts linked to a well-known business newspaper, Vedomosti, published an image of a press statement bearing a photograph of the king and the Buckingham Palace letterhead. It stated that Charles had “passed away unexpectedly yesterday afternoon,” citing the palace’s Royal Communications. After making the rounds in Russia, the news made its way to Ukraine before the wider world began to catch wind of it.

As Buckingham Palace is the only channel through which such news would be announced and with nothing official coming from its end, the information was debunked. Various parties began to quell the public confusion and frenzy by publishing statements officially declaring the news to be false.

“Reports about the death of King Charles are FAKE,” the UK embassy in Russia posted on social media. The UK embassy in Ukraine posted a similar message soon after. 

Another user published photos of the fake statement that originated in Russia and wrote:

“No, King Charles did not die unexpectedly, Buckingham palace did not share these news. It is now all over Russian news, but it is a fake report.”

Users expressed their relief at discovering the news was untrue, while others called the whole debacle “absolutely disgusting.” 

“How sick how people has been becoming,” a user wrote as another remarked they already “assumed” the news was fake and wished Charles well with the message, “Long may he reign!”

Meanwhile, the New York Post claimed Buckingham Palace issued a denial to the state-run Russian TASS news agency that read:

“We are happy to confirm that The King is continuing with official and private business.”

King Charles III (2023), (Pool/Samir Hussein/WireImage via Getty Images)

Sadly, the British Royal Family was rocked with yet another distressing news. Princess Catherine revealed in a video shared to the Prince and Princess of Wales’ social media accounts that she was also diagnosed with cancer and has been receiving “preventive chemotherapy.” 

Charles has since offered her well-wishes to Catherine, who flew to Amner Hall with her family to celebrate Easter weekend. Meanwhile, King Charles III, after missing the official Holy Week festivities, had his first official public appearance. 

He and Queen Camilla attended the Easter Mattins Service at St George's Chapel in Windsor Castle on Easter Sunday, Mar. 31, 2024. Fans were surprised to see King Charles and expressed their sentiments on social media. 

“He looks well. Best wishes your majesty,” a fan said on Facebook, echoing another, who said: “Great to see our dear King looking so well. May God bless him.”

However, some have noticed King Charles’ appearance and compared it to his state before his cancer diagnosis. Some had even grim comments. 

“He look so thin. 😢,” a user noticed on Instagram, while another said, “He looks weak. Poor bloke needs retirement and time to rest.” 

Photos of King Charles III looking “gravely ill” have since made waves on social media, with some worrying about his alleged worsening condition. 

“Gosh...  Sadly he doesn't look well in that picture does he? His hand looks so red.😭,” one tweeted, while another noticed that “He's always had sausage hands though, but it is rather red…” 

On Instagram, some even cast doubt on the British Royal Family’s idea of letting Charles III shake hands with the public, given the fact that he’s immunocompromised because of his cancer diagnosis. 

“Cancer patients shouldn’t be shaking hands or being in crowds while getting treatments. But hey- you go right ahead… 😳 🙄,” one reminded. 

King Charles III (2024), (Hollie Adams - WPA Pool/Getty Images Entertainment via Getty Images)

What can you say about King Charles III’s latest appearance? Do you think he looks sickly, like what others said? Let us know, and pass this on to your family, friends, and other Royal Family fans out there!

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