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Australian War Memorial mourns the death of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II

Pictured above: Australian War Memorial AWM2022.4.3.7 The Australian War Memorial was illuminated royal purple to mark Queen Elizabeth II’s 70 years of service, her Platinum Jubile

It is a day of sadness for the Australian War Memorial as the world mourns the passing of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

“I was deeply saddened to wake up to the news; her passing will be a great shock and unsettling to many,” Australian War Memorial Director, Matt Anderson, said.

“We were honoured to welcome her to the Australian War Memorial on numerous occasions.

“During these visits the Queen laid wreaths, toured our galleries, met with Australian Victoria Cross recipients and greeted the crowds of visitors who gathered here to catch a glimpse of her.

“She attended Anzac Day at the Australian War Memorial in 1970, accompanied by HRH Prince Phillip and Princess Anne.

“Queen Elizabeth II was a remarkable woman and the longest reigning British monarch.

“For 70 years she reigned with such grace.

“Earlier this year, we celebrated her 70 years of service with the Platinum Jubilee.

“The Memorial was honoured to mark that historic event, illuminating our iconic building in royal purple in February and June.”

This evening, 9 September 2022, at 9pm, ‘Queen Elizabeth II’ will be projected onto the façade of the Australian War Memorial’s Hall of Memory (the dome) as a tribute to the Queen.

Queen Elizabeth II acceded to the throne on 6 February 1952 when she was 25 years old.

During her 70-year reign, and earlier in her life, Her Majesty lived through war and conflict.

As a young princess in 1940, at just 14 years of age, she took to the airwaves to address the children of the Commonwealth, many of them having been evacuated from their homes due to war.

“And when peace comes, remember it will be for us, the children of today, to make the world of tomorrow a better and happier place,” Her Majesty the Queen said.

In 1944, when she turned 18, she joined the Auxiliary Territorial Service, the women’s branch of the British Army, becoming the first female member of the Royal Family to become a full-time active member of the armed services. The then Princess Elizabeth began training as a mechanic and qualified in 1945.

As Queen, she maintained a close relationship with the armed forces through regular visits to service establishments and ships and spent a great deal of time meeting servicemen and servicewomen of all ranks, and their families, both at home, in Australia and other countries.

She was Patron of a number of Australian Army Corps, the Royal Australian Air Force Reserve, and Ex-Service organisations, including the Returned and Services League and the Naval Association of Australia. Queen Elizabeth II was also Captain General of the Royal Regiment of Australian Artillery.

“On behalf of the Memorial, I would like to express our condolences to the Royal Family and our thoughts are with all who will be affected by her passing,” Mr Anderson said.

“We are grateful for her continued support over the years and will remember her as a woman of quiet dignity and compassion.

“For every moment of her reign, she devoted herself to the service of others.”

Pictured above: Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II on her last visit to the Australian War Memorial on 25 October 2011, where she visited the Roll of Honour and laid a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.

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