Queen Elizabeth II: Calgary man arrives in UK to pay his respects


For an Alberta man, sending well wishes from Canada was not enough after the death of Queen Elizabeth II.

When Tad Milmine, of Calgary, heard of her passing, he immediately booked a plane ticket to London so he could say goodbye in person.

“As soon as I heard the news, immediately went to WestJet’s website, immediately booked the next flight available the next day – an overnight flight,” he explained to CTV National News on Wednesday.

While Milmine says he usually doesn’t “do things that motivate in the moment,” he said booking a flight was a “no-brainer.” He said he would not miss this final milestone in the Queen’s reign.

“I didn’t look in my bank account to see if I could afford it, I didn’t call my boss to say, ‘Can I get this far?’ I just do it because I have to,” Milmine said.

Milmine has gained a reputation as an anti-bullying advocate, having received a number of noble awards on behalf of the late monarch and even speaking on behalf of the London Metropolitan Police to students. Great Britain.

“I have shared that connection with the Queen with very few awards on her behalf, but the reality is that she has been my Queen for a very long time,” he said.

While it was difficult for him to describe why he had to say goodbye directly to the Queen, Milmine said she felt like family to him.

“I lost all of my grandparents at a very young age. So it’s like the Queen is the surrogate. She’s my grandmother and I know that even with that, someone will say, ‘Well, that’s the thing. that doesn’t work” and I understand that. But again, this is not for them. It’s for me,” Milmine said.

Speaking ahead of the Queen’s coffin procession, Milmine said he hoped the Queen’s memory and reign would live on, with stories passed on to younger generations. He said the Queen’s more than 70 years of service “should be an inspiration to all.”

“We will always remember her and not just because history will tell us but for who she wanted to be, and I think we’ve had a great loss and it’s an honor to be here. here today,” he said.

Even for those who aren’t fans of the monarchy, Milmine said he hopes Canadians take time during the mourning period to reflect on the Queen’s long life.

“I think it’s time to pause and appreciate what she’s done, and I think there are no words to what she’s done for us as a country and Commonwealth. commonwealth,” he said.

Milmine said, to see her coffin go by during the procession was “overwhelming”.

“I didn’t expect… to have such overwhelming feelings for her,” he said, wiping away tears.

“My heart is satisfied, while it is also broken,” he added.

As he bids farewell to a sovereign king, Milmine hopes the monarchy is “in good hands moving forward.”

“The bar is pretty high. She’s amazing, absolutely amazing,” he said.

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