Queen Elizabeth II: A Life Of Legacy

Aaron Jiang ’23

Queen Elizabeth II began life just like any one of us: an infant in her mother’s arms. In the picture above, she was held by her mother of the same name, Elizabeth, and her father who would later on become King George VI. Such were the humble beginnings of all of us, albeit her royalty status, a blank slate of innocence; yet she will go on to create profound impact in the world, just as all of us will with our own individual gift. 

Elizabeth’s reign exceeded seven decades, a duration that outshone  her great-great grandmother’s, Queen Victoria, who previously reigned longer than any King of the United Kingdom. Elizabeth adds an extra seven years to that record. Since 1952, there has been a total change of seven Popes, 14 United States  Presidents and 15 British Prime Ministers; yet, there was only one queen, Elizabeth II.

This journey ended about a year after the death of Prince Phillip, which the Queen remarked left a void within her heart. At the conclusion of her life, there are many thoughts the world has shared and contributed toward this sentimental yet historical moment as reported by CNN:

“Taiwan remembers and celebrates her life of leadership and service, which set an example for people around the world,” President Tsai of Taiwan tweeted. 

“She had a strong belief in the cause of human freedom and left great legacies of dignity,” Yoon, South Korea’s President wrote. “Her kind heart and good deeds will remain in our memories.” 

“Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II will be remembered as a stalwart of our times,” Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi said in a tweet. “She provided inspiring leadership to her nation and people. She personified dignity and decency in public life,” Modi wrote. 

“Her Majesty’s reign saw one of the longest periods of peace and prosperity…will always be remembered fondly as a great world leader,” Singapore’s Prime Minister commented. He believes Queen Elizabeth II was “the very heart and soul of the United Kingdom”.

“Queen Elizabeth was a model of leadership that will be immortalized in history,” King of Saudi Arabia said.

Pope Francis mourned the death of Queen Elizabeth II, praising her “steadfast witness of faith in Jesus Christ” in a telegram to King Charles III, the new monarch of the United Kingdom. “Upon you and all who cherish the memory of your late mother, I invoke an abundance of divine blessings as a pledge of comfort and strength in the Lord,” he said.

The sentiments above are just an excerpt of the many more positive remarks of what the world has to say about the late British monarch all centuring around the theme of her love, wisdom, and peace from other politicians to celebrities whom she has recognized. 

Amid this time of mourning for the world, police have decided to remove the barriers blocking access to the gates of Balmoral Castle to enable people to pay their tribute to their late and beloved Queen, through leaving flowers. In addition, others are outside Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle for that same matter.

Her death was ground shaking for not just Britain at the time, but the whole world where  “television networks broke into programing” and “as if a US President had died” CNN reported. The United Nations held a moment of silence to honor her passing, while flags on official buildings were lowered to half-staff in Washington.

Charles III automatically became the next monarch in the bloodline the moment the Queen passed, pictured below. Let us wish King Charles III, shown on the bottom left of this photo from 1969, luck as he endeavors to uphold the honor that was his mother.

While we are certainly nowhere near the level of pertinence as the Queen of England, her life story is symbolic of all of ours in a way. When we all depart, what will we all leave for this world of ours? For the Queen, made clear by the world’s remarks, was her love. Each one of us will contribute to our world just like the Queen within our own regard for greatness. Let us celebrate the new King, while may the soul of the Queen rest in peace.