Volume 23, Number 9 | The Newspaper of Lower Manhattan | July 9 - 15, 2010
Downtown Express photo by J.B. Nicholas
The heat did not seem to bother Her Majesty on her visit to the Big Apple on Tuesday. She was all smiles.
An historic visit on a historically hot day
BY John Bayles
She was here and gone in a flash, wearing her trademark white gloves and a silk hat. Queen Elizabeth II’s trip to Manhattan on Tuesday lasted only five hours. Her husband, 89-year-old Prince Phillip, Duke of Edinburgh, accompanied her on the visit, which happened to fall on the hottest day in New York City’s history. Temperatures reached 103 degrees, breaking the 1999 highmark of 101.
It was only the third trip to New York City in the Queen’s 84-year life. She visited first in 1957 and then again in 1976.
Her Majesty’s day began at the United Nations where she spoke for less than ten minutes to a packed hall. According to the New York Times, she noted the primary challenges currently facing the global community, terrorism and climate change, and said the waging of peace is often the toughest role of leadership. She said, “In my lifetime, the United Nations has moved from being a high-minded aspiration to being a real force for common good.”
It was the first time she addressed the body since 1957.
She was then whisked over to the site of the 9/11 terrorists attacks to pay tribute to those who perished on that day by laying a wreath at the site of the South Tower. Mayor Michael Bloomberg, New York Governor David Patterson and New Jersey Governor Christopher Christie joined her. Afterwards, she exchanged words and thoughts with a few families of 9/11 victims and some of the first responders.
Lastly, she traveled a few blocks to Hanover Square to “officially” open the British Garden of Remembrance, created two years ago to honor the 67 British citizens who died in the attacks.
“This British Garden of Remembrance memorializes one of those difficult moments – the World Trade Center attacks,” said Mayor Bloomberg. “This beautiful addition to our city will forever remind us that we stand side by side in the fight for freedom. We are grateful for Her Majesty’s friendship, leadership, and support – and also honored she is here to officially open this garden to the public.”