The photo was taken by Fred Leslie, of Clan Leslie, in 2010, during a
Royal Visit to Canada

CMAC shares with Britain, Canada, the Commonwealth and the rest of the world our great sorrow in learning of the passing of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

For Queen and Country: The end of Canada's Elizabethan Age

The Diamond Jubilee Window in Centre Block commemorates Canada’s two longest reigning monarchs: Queen Victoria, left, and Queen Elizabeth.

The window has been removed for safekeeping while the rehabilitation of Centre Block takes place. (Diamond Jubilee Window, stained glass, 2010, Goodman Zissoff Stained Glass Studio, H: 383 cm W: 134.5 cm, Senate Artwork and Heritage Collection.)

Canada’s Elizabethan Age saw a maturing country flourish.

After the deprivations and sacrifices of the Depression and the Second World War, Canada came into its own at home and abroad. Canada helped defuse the 1956 Suez Crisis that threatened Western unity, Canada adopted the Bill of Rights to protect fundamental freedoms, and Canada laid the foundation for a universal health care system — all within the first 10 years of the young Queen of Canada’s reign.

Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II would personally sign into law the Constitution Act, 1982 to finally bring Canada’s Constitution under complete Canadian control, welcome the newly created territory of Nunavut with a visit — and a few words of Inuktitut — in 2002, and she squarely addressed Canada’s difficult past with a message of solidarity to Indigenous peoples on the country’s first National Day for Truth and Reconciliation.

On September 8, 2022, Elizabeth the Second, by the Grace of God of the United Kingdom, Canada and Her other Realms and Territories Queen, Head of the Commonwealth, Defender of the Faith died peacefully at Balmoral at the age of 96, bringing to an end Canada’s Elizabethan Age. She is succeeded by her son, Charles III, King of Canada, who shares her devotion to this country.

As he said in 1996, “every time I come to Canada, and I’ve been here many times since 1970, a little more of Canada seeps into my bloodstream, and from there, straight into my heart.”

The Queen was born on April 21, 1926, the eldest child of the future king George VI. Her father was thrust into the role of King by the abdication of his brother, King Edward VIII. A naturally shy man with a stutter, King George faced the challenges of the throne with dignity and determination, particularly during the darkest days of the Second World War when he refused to leave London at the height of the Blitz.

His daughter inherited his devotion to duty. When she turned 21 in April 1947, the then-princess pledged her life — “whether it be long or short” — to the service of the Commonwealth in a radio address from Cape Town, South Africa.

“But I shall not have the strength to carry out this resolution alone unless you join in it with me, as I now invite you to do,” she said, with characteristic humility.

“God help me make good my vow, and God bless all of you who are willing to share in it.”

She acceded to the throne on February 6, 1952, immediately upon the death of her father; her coronation ceremony took place on June 2, 1953 and was the first to be televised. Millions watched around the world.

In 1957, the Queen came to Canada to open the 23rd Parliament and read the Speech from the Throne in the Senate Chamber.

“You have come here to form this new Parliament from across a great land,” she said.

“I am proud to contemplate the great heritage of this nation … but I am more proud to contemplate the spirit and ideas which brought this country to nationhood, and now, drawing reinforcement and enrichment from many lands and peoples, have given Canada a national character peculiarly her own.”

She read the throne speech again in October 1977, during her Silver Jubilee tour.

“In 10 visits to Canada spread over a quarter of a century — seven in the last decade alone — Prince Philip and I have met many thousands of Canadians,” she said at the opening of the 30th Parliament.

“I have always been full of admiration for what Canada is: the new generation fill me with confidence for what Canada can become.”

Even the tumultuous events of the early 1990s could not diminish her dignity or dry wit. Speaking to an audience of London dignitaries at a 1992 event marking the 40th anniversary of her reign — and just days after a fire at Windsor Castle — she reflected on her “annus horribilus” with an observation that seems particularly apt today.

“Criticism is good for people and institutions that are part of public life,” she said. “But we are all part of the same fabric of our national society and that scrutiny, by one part of another, can be just as effective if it is made with a touch of gentleness, good humour and understanding.”

Canada and the Commonwealth celebrated the Queen’s longevity in 2022, the year of her Platinum Jubilee. Canada’s Parliament buildings were lit up in purple to mark the occasion and a special flag bearing the Canadian Platinum Jubilee Emblem — based on her royal cypher — flew from the Senate of Canada Building’s ceremonial flagpole. She is Canada and the United Kingdom’s longest reigning monarch.

The Speaker of the Senate, the Honourable George J. Furey, K.C., paid tribute to her service.

“At the time of her birth, Queen Elizabeth II was not expected to ascend to the throne, but service finds us all in our time and our place. Her reign now has ended, yet its spirit shall continue to reside within this country she loved so dearly.”

Her restraint, self-sacrifice and devotion to the Commonwealth will be a revered part of the history of Canada for generations to come.

Reprinted with the permission of the Senate of Canada
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On behalf of the Munro of Foulis family, Clan Munro both here in Scotland, the UK and the wider diaspora, Hector and Sarah (Alpha) Munro of Foulis sent their heart felt condolences and grateful thanks for the inspiring life of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II to Buckingham Palace and have shared on the Clan Munro website a short personal video of the Royal Cortege taken by Hector’s sister and brother-in-law Colonel and Mrs. R. C. Hunt, whilst they stood in respectful appreciation of Her Majesty, near St Giles Cathedral on The Royal Mile, Edinburgh on Monday 12 September 2022

© The Clan Munro Association of Canada