AUSTRALIA woke to the news that the sun had set in the second Elizabethan age.
Our ma’am, who was always there for us, was gone.
Church bells rang 96 times at midday in downtown Sydney. Army guns rang out 96 times in the capital, Canberra.
And the Queen’s face shone from the sails of the Sydney Opera House.
There was shock, sadness and heartfelt condolences. But above all there was respect for a remarkable life of service.
Australia today is a very different country from the one Queen Elizabeth inherited in 1952.
We were eight million then; now there are 25 million – a quarter foreign-born and half with foreign-born parents.
It’s a huge tribute to the Queen that these migrants mourned just as deeply as those with British connections.
Anthony Albanese, her 15th Australian Prime Minister, reflected on her wise, curious and helpful nature.
TV dusted footage of ex-PM Sir Robert Menzies saying: “I’ve only seen her pass but I’ll love her ’till I die.”
It was pathetic in 1963 and made the Queen blush, but now it seemed oddly appropriate.
Malcolm Turnbull, a former Prime Minister and leader of the Australian Republican Movement, became emotional when he spoke of his great affection for the woman he hoped to replace as Australia’s head of state in 1999.
Today was about respect. But it is inevitable that the Queen’s death will reignite the republican debate in Australia.
Will the crown stand here? Probably not.
But King Charles III. may not matter. He knows it’s a problem for the Australian people.
https://www.the-sun.com/news/6189632/mark-day-australia-mourns-queen-remarkable-service/ Australia mourns the loss of our Queen – there has been shock and sadness but mostly respect for a remarkable life of service