Los Angeles County and California officials joined leaders worldwide Thursday in mourning the death — and celebrating the life — of Queen Elizabeth II, Britain’s longest-reigning monarch, who died at age 96 after serving on the throne for seven decades.
“She was an icon of grace and commitment to duty in the interest of the people,” L.A. County Supervisor Janice Hahn tweeted shortly after Buckingham Palace announced the death of Elizabeth.
“I’m certain that now it’s the angels who are curtsying in her honor,” Hahn added — noting that, “15 Prime Ministers and 14 Presidents came and went, but for 7 decades Queen Elizabeth II was a constant for the British people, the Commonwealth nations, and the world. My prayers are with her family and the British people as they mourn her loss. May she Rest in Peace.”
Meanwhile, Supervisor Holly Mitchell announced that flags at all county facilities will be lowered to half-staff “to honor the life and memory of Queen Elizabeth II who will be mourned globally for her unprecedented reign.”
Gov. Gavin Newsom, in a statement, said Elizabeth “had an extraordinary impact throughout her momentous life and work.”
“Never having expected to become Queen, she nevertheless embraced her duty to serve, joining the armed services during World War II and pledging on her twenty-first birthday to devote her life to the nation and the Commonwealth,” Newsom said. “Throughout her unprecedented seven decades on the throne, Queen Elizabeth remained true to that promise, providing an unwavering source of leadership, inspiration and stability through times of great social change and uncertainty while serving as matriarch to her own family.”
Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-California, recalled the Queen’s trip to San Francisco in 1983, when Feinstein was mayor, and said Elizabeth was, “gracious and kind, a wonderful representative of her nation.”
“She was a leader admired by millions, a beacon of stability and civility within the U.K. and around the world,” Feinstein said in a statement. “I came to admire her as truly a great person.”
The Royal Family said Elizabeth died Thursday, Sept. 8, at Balmoral Castle, her summer residence in Scotland, after family members had rushed to her side following news that her health had taken a turn for the worse. Elizabeth’s son, Prince Charles, was elevated to king, becoming King Charles III.
Charles released a statement saying, “The death of my beloved Mother, Her Majesty the Queen, is a moment of the greatest sadness for me and all members of my family. We mourn profoundly the passing of a cherished Sovereign and a much-loved Mother. I know her loss will be deeply felt throughout the country, the Realms and the Commonwealth, and by countless people around the world.”
Elizabeth ascended to the throne on Feb. 6, 1952 — at age 25 — upon the death of her father, King George VI.
Following Thursday’s announcement, President Joe Biden issued a statement saying, “Today, the thoughts and prayers of people all across the United States are with the people of the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth in their grief.”
“We send our deepest condolences to the Royal Family, who are not only mourning their Queen, but their dear mother, grandmother, and great- grandmother,” Biden added. “Her legacy will loom large in the pages of British history, and in the story of our world.”
Biden also called the late queen “a steadying presence and a source of comfort and pride for generations of Britons, including many who have never known their country without her.”