‘This is a solemn moment’: Residents in Waterloo region honor Queen Elizabeth II

'This is a solemn moment': Residents in Waterloo region honor Queen Elizabeth II

As people around the world watch the funeral service for Queen Elizabeth II, residents in Waterloo Region and in Guelph also gathered to pay respects to Her Majesty.

The Waterloo Royal Canadian Legion Branch 530 hosted a ceremony Monday morning at the Waterloo cenotaph.

Members of the legion said they wanted to pay their respects to the monarch they served.

“This is a solemn moment that we take,” said local Legion President Bob Berg. “[The Queen] is a patron of our legion and the name ‘royal’ was put there with her consent back in the early 60s.”

Dozens of people gathered around the cenotaph as the Canadian national anthem was sung, followed by a moment of silence and a prayer for the Queen.

“She did an admiral job of basically embracing the range of religious communities, in spite of her strong Christian faith,” said Paul Ellingham, pastor for the Waterloo Legion.

Gatherers than laid wreaths and poppies around the cenotaph. The ceremony ended with the singing of God Save the King, now that Charles III is the head of state.

Meanwhile, a Kitchener retirement hosted a tea party for its residents. Tea and scones were served while seniors wore crowns.

“It’s not only the history but her style and what she represents as a woman, especially for how many senior women we have living here,” said Krystie Zolnai, sales advisor at Doon Village Retirement Home.

Many residents called the Queen “wonderful.”

“I pledged allegiance to the Queen when I joined the air force,” said one resident.

Another senior who is from Scotland said she’s seen the Queen multiple times.

“I had watched the processions, and I’ve done a little waving,” she said.

In Guelph, a cartoon drawing of the monarch is painted on a downtown Guelph business window.

“It reminds me of her on the very back of the train when she came through Guelph when I was five years old,” said Russell McGladrey, a Guelph resident. “I waved and she waved back and looked right at me.”

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