It was with great sadness that I heard that the Lord of Mann, Her Royal Highness Queen Elizabeth the Second, has passed away.
The Lord of Mann earned the affection of generations here in the Isle of Man, across these Isles, across the Commonwealth and around the world.
She was the longest serving Lord of Mann in history, and she served with honour, grace and dedication.
As a young woman, Princess Elizabeth went on her first overseas tour in 1947 to Africa. On her 21st birthday, she made the following pledge which was broadcast across the Commonwealth on radio: “I declare before you all that my whole life, whether it be long or short, shall be devoted to your service and the service of our great imperial family to which we all belong.”
As we reflect on the seventy-five years since that pledge, we can universally agree that she has honoured that pledge. She lived up to her committment. She kept her word. She did her duty.
Queen Elizabeth has been an anchor for our age.
As we reflect on her death, we can and should mourn. But as we look upon her seventy years as the Lord of Mann, and her ninety-seven years of life, we should first and foremost celebrate her life as a daughter, a sister, a wife, a mother, a grandmother and, most recently, a great-gandmother. She played many of those roles not just to her immediate family, but to our nation and our Commonwealth of Nations.
Her character, what she achieved and the legacy is beyond measure. Her contribution to these Isles, and the world at large, was huge. Every living member of my family have only ever known life with Queen Elizabeth II as our Queen of the United Kingdom, our Lord of Mann, and our Queen of Australia. In that role, she was the matriach of not just the Royal Family, but our national families. In that role, she has been loyal and devoted to her family, and our national families through the good times, the bad and the tough times that every family has.
Thus, our thoughts should turn to her family. We offer our condolences to her family.
We give thanks, as a nation and a planet, for the extraordinary life and work of Queen Elizabeth the Second.
We thank you, Queen Elizabeth. A true legend.