The world reacts to the passing of Queen Elizabeth II

The Concordia Courier

The Late Queen Elizabeth II

By Eva Prewitt | 9/23/2022

On Thurs., Sept. 8, Queen Elizabeth II, Britain’s longest reigning monarch, passed away at the age of 96. 

The news came as a shock to billions, and the mourning of the much-loved face of the British government has been a major undertaking for the island nation for the past weeks. 

For over 70 years, the queen served as the public face of the country, where she was a rock (and rock star) and source of strength for her people. 

Before she was crowned queen, Elizabeth, then Elizabeth Alexandra Mary, famously said, "I declare before you that my whole life, whether it be long or short, shall be devoted to your service, and the service of our great imperial family to which we all belong," and truly, she delivered on that promise.

There is certainly not a student, and likely not a faculty member, on campus who remembers a time before the Queen was crowned. To many, it seemed almost an inalienable reality. 

“Honestly, it’s a little weird,” said Andrew Held, freshman. “I knew the ‘immortal queen’ thing was a joke, but it was almost one of the constants of life. There was Christmas and there was the queen. It’s a little daunting, it makes you remember that everyone’s mortal. I think we all knew it was coming, we just didn’t know it’d be soon.”

In the past several weeks, Britain has been alive with activity, with ceremonies, travel and various methods of mourning taking center stage as the country went through the lengthy process of putting their former monarch to rest. 

On Monday, Sept. 19, 11 days after her passing, the queen was interred in the royal vault, where the bodies of monarchs before her were laid. 

The newly crowned King Charles III issued a statement in the wake of his mother’s passing. “The death of my beloved, Mother, Her Majesty The Queen, is a moment of the greatest sadness for me and all members of my family. We mourn profoundly the passing of a cherished Sovereign and a much-loved Mother. I know her loss will be deeply felt throughout the country, the Realms and the Commonwealth, and by countless people around the world. During this period of mourning and change, my family and I will be comforted and sustained by our knowledge of the respect and deep affection in which the Queen was so widely held.”

Charles, during his first public address as king, also thanked the queen for her faithful service to her country, and pledged to follow her example, devoting the rest of his years to Britain as its king.

“As the queen herself did with such unswerving devotion, I too now solemnly pledge myself, throughout the remaining time God grants me, to uphold the constitutional principles at the heart of our nation,” he said. “And wherever you may live in the United Kingdom, or in the realms and territories across the world, and whatever may be your background or beliefs, I shall endeavor to serve you with loyalty, respect and love, as I have throughout my life.”


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