Manitobans mourn Queen Elizabeth’s death

Manitobans are in mourning after Queen Elizabeth’s death on Thursday.

Buckingham Palace confirmed Thursday that Elizabeth, the longest-reigning monarch in British history, died in the afternoon at the age of 96.

Billboards of the queen have been put up on Disraeli Bridge in Winnipeg.

Billboards on Disraeli Bridge marking the queen’s death. Randall Paul / Global News

Manitoba leaders are taking to social media to express condolences and mourn her death.

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Premier Heather Stefanson expressed her sadness and reflected on her interactions with the queen in a tweet.

In addition to the tweet, she also posted a statement reflecting on the queen’s visits to Manitoba over the years.

“Her Majesty visited Manitoba on six separate occasions, with stops in a number of communities including Winnipeg, Churchill, Brandon, Beausejour, Norway House, Carman, Gillam, Flin Flon, Swan River, The Pas, Portage la Prairie, Oakville, Dugald, and Dauphin,” Stefanson said.

“The Queen celebrated Manitoba’s centenary, toured many locations and businesses, and made personal connections with thousands of Manitobans.”

The premier’s statement also offers a link where Manitobans can go to share memories via a virtual book of condolence.

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Winnipeg Mayor Brian Bowman also issued a statement saying “this is the end of an era.”

“Today, Winnipeggers are in mourning. With our fellow Manitobans, Canadians, people of the Commonwealth, and those who admired her all around the world, we are grieving the only monarch most of us have ever known,” he said.

“It is a time when we remember the special dignity, unfailing kindness, and spirit of quiet encouragement which The Queen personified throughout her long and illustrious reign.”

Manitoba’s lieutenant-governor Janice C. Filmon also issued a statement saying “Her Majesty enjoyed a wonderful relationship with all of the people of Manitoba.”

“She spent time in communities large and small throughout our province, making numerous lasting personal connections,” Filmon added.

Read more: A look back on Queen Elizabeth’s visits to Manitoba

The lieutenant-governor and the premier signed the book of condolences marking the death of the Queen at 3:30 p.m.

Lieutenant-governor and premier sign book of condolences marking the death of the queen. Jordan Pearn / Global News

Among the other notable Manitobans paying tribute to the queen was NDP Leader Wab Kinew, who tweeted out a statement expressing his condolences.

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Kinew said he felt a “particular connection” to the queen, to whom he swore an oath as the leader of the Opposition.

The leader of Manitoba’s Liberal Party, Dougald Lamont, posted on Twitter expressing his sadness and reflecting on the queen’s reign.

Lamont called her a “constant” in a chaotic world.

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Additionally, the Manitoba Métis Federation released a statement saying their thoughts and prayers are with the Royal Family as well as the people of the United Kingdom.

The Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs (AMC) and the Assembly of First Nations (AFN) also offered their condolences in a written statement.

“We are saddened to hear the news from Buckingham Palace regarding the death of Her Majesty the Queen,” said Deputy Grand Chief Cornell McLean,

“First Nations people have a special nation-to-nation relationship with the Crown. We are two sovereign nations who come together to honour the treaties between us, and we look forward to working with the new King as treaty partners.”

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Winnipeg’s Health Sciences Centre shared multiple pictures of the queen visiting the centre throughout the years.

The Winnipeg airport reflected on the queen’s July 2010 visit. She was the first passenger through the terminal before its official opening.

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Former Manitoba chief of protocol Dwight MacAulay co-ordinated many royal visits to the province and he says she made a powerful impression.

“She’s got a definite legacy of grace, class, dignity and I think we were very fortunate to have her as our head of state,” he said.

“I think many people looked to her for wisdom and a bit of guidance on occasion.”

The queen was in Manitoba in 1951 as a princess and according to MacAulay, she made an impact on the people around her.

“I cannot tell you how many people came up to me and told me — decades later — that they remember where they were on the street, what block they were on, what house they were in front, did she wave to them or so on. It made that much of an impression on people’s memory.”

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