Regina residents, visitors sign condolence books to honour the late Queen Elizabeth

·3 min read
Regina has set up condolence books, giving the public a chance to express their sympathies for the passing the Queen.  (Laura Sciarpelletti/CBC - image credit)
Regina has set up condolence books, giving the public a chance to express their sympathies for the passing the Queen. (Laura Sciarpelletti/CBC - image credit)

As much of the country mourns the death of Queen Elizabeth II, Regina has set up condolence books across the city.

The books are for the Saskatchewan public to express their sympathies for the passing the Queen, according to the provincial government.

The books can be found at Government House, Regina City Hall, while a virtual condolence book is also available on the lieutenant governor of Saskatchewan's website.

One of the condolence books can be found  in the Cumberland Gallery at the Legislative Building. The gallery is filled with portraits and art pieces of the late Queen, and on Friday a steady steam of people visited to pay their respects and sign the book.

"I'm feeling very sad because the Commonwealth [and] the country have lost a wonderful woman," said Donald White, a Regina resident originally from the U.K.

"She's been a brilliant states person, she's been a ambassador. And [had] a sense of duty to the job she had to do ... just wonderful. I think it's a big loss," adding he's not surprised at Canada's strong reaction to the Queen's death.

"I think she was held in high regard by most of the countries of the world and particularly Canada, and from what I've seen so far in Saskatchewan, they're really sorry that she's died. She will be missed."

Laura Sciarpelletti/CBC
Laura Sciarpelletti/CBC

Shirley Blyth, from Whitewood, Sask.,said she wasn't just honouring Queen Elizabeth's memory, but also her late mother's, whom she called a "real Royal watcher."

"We just grew up looking at LIFE magazines and pictures of the Queen and watching the royal weddings. And then when we heard that the Queen was ill and passed on, it just meant a lot for us to come and and honour her passing. She is a wonderful regent," Blyth said.

Blyth says her mother watched every television program featuring the Queen, collected books about the royals and saved every magazine that had the Queen in it. Some of these items now belong to Blyth.

She said the Queen was elegant to the very end.

"Well, we saw her growing frail in the past year and losing weight. [But] she was still vibrant and had her beautiful smile and still led the country. But I kind of felt like her time was drawing near," Blyth said.

"She had a great life. She was a great Queen. And we'll miss her. It will certainly different having a King."

Blyth said King Charles III is really going to need to step up now, and she thinks he'll do just that.

"He's been prepared to do the job for a long time. I'm pretty sure he'd be up to it. He's got some big shoes to fill, but he's a great man. He's got a great sense of humour and I'm sure he'll do a wonderful job," said White.

King Charles III, who became the monarch immediately upon his mother's death on Thursday, will be formally proclaimed king at a special ceremony on Saturday.

All the condolence books will remain in Saskatchewan and will be placed in the provincial archives once the period of mourning has ended, according to the province.