P.E.I. mourns death of Queen Elizabeth

·3 min read
Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip listen to welcome speech by Premier Alex B. Campbell in Prince Edward Island on July 1, 1973. (The Canadian Press - image credit)
Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip listen to welcome speech by Premier Alex B. Campbell in Prince Edward Island on July 1, 1973. (The Canadian Press - image credit)

Prince Edward Islanders are mourning the death of Queen Elizabeth, Canada's head of state and the longest-ever reigning British monarch.

The Queen died Thursday at age 96.

P.E.I. Lt.-Gov. Antoinette Perry received the news Thursday from Canada's Governor General with "profound sadness," she said.

"Her Majesty was a remarkable sovereign, respected and admired around the world.".

Wayne Thibodeau/CBC
Wayne Thibodeau/CBC

Perry extended condolences on behalf of all Islanders to King Charles III and the entire Royal Family. The death of Queen Elizabeth means Charles automatically becomes King of Canada. Royal officials have indicated the new monarch will be known as King Charles III.

"I know from my meeting with Her Majesty in London in March of 2018 that she had a special place in her heart for Prince Edward Island," she said, remembering that meeting at Buckingham Palace and how at ease the sovereign made her feel.

"Our province has welcomed Her Majesty on several occasions and we share our deep sorrow with all other peoples of the Commonwealth, and the world."

Starting Friday, a book of condolence will be available for anyone to sign at Government House, the official residence of the lieutenant-governor, between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. Books of condolence will also be available at the Legislative Assembly at the Coles Building in Charlottetown and the provincial libraries in Souris, Montague, Summerside and Tignish. An online book of condolence will also be available on the lieutenant governor's website.

Perry said she always looked to the Queen not only as her "boss," but as a model.

"She carried out her duties with such grace. It's funny every time I dress, even for an occasion, I'll look in the mirror and I'll think, would Her Majesty approve?"

Perry invited Islanders to come and spend some time in quiet contemplation of the late monarch in the Platinum Jubilee Garden planted on the grounds of Government House.

'Long live the King'

P.E.I. Premier Dennis King also expressed his sympathy on Queen Elizabeth's death.

Wayne Thibodeau/CBC
Wayne Thibodeau/CBC

King praised her unfailing sense of duty to constitutional affairs and public engagements since the beginning of her reign in 1952, calling it inspirational.

He noted the many times Queen Elizabeth visited P.E.I. both before and after she was crowned. She and her husband Philip visited in 1951 when she was Princess Elizabeth. They visited again in 1959, then in 1964 for the official opening of the Confederation Centre of the Arts and in 1973 to celebrate the centennial of P.E.I.'s entry into Confederation.

"I offer our most heartfelt condolences to Her Majesty's children and grandchildren, and all who mourn her loss worldwide," Premier King said.

"As we mourn the passing of our Queen, we are privileged to commemorate His Majesty's accession to the Throne and extend our sincere best wishes for himself and for the welfare and prosperity of the people throughout the Commonwealth. Long live the King."