Pittsburghers react: Queen Elizabeth II dies at 96

·2 min read

A scheduled night of fun turned into one of remembrance as Pittsburgh Brits and Anglophiles reflected on the life and legacy of Britain’s longest serving monarch.

“It’s obviously the end of an era,” Jonathan Spatz said. He grew up near London but has lived in the United States for 50 years.

He remembers when it all began.

“The Queen’s coronation was on a 9-inch, square TV. All my relatives were watching, and we were playing around. It’s kind of a sad thing to think.”

Spatz is part of the organization “Britsburgh.” The group’s members gathered at Hartwood Acres Thursday evening for Shakespeare’s “A Comedy of Errors,” but the evening began with a somber message.

Attendees were led in a moment of silence by Britsburgh board member and Brit Robert Charlesworth.

“[A] loss for our country and possibly the world,” he said of the Queen’s death.

Others remembered her as a woman who helped lead Great Britain through the gray days after WWII.

“In those days, England was in decline. Coming out of the war, I remember everything being black and white,” Spatz said.

The Queen is also remembered as a monarch who stuck to her word.

“She made a promise to the British people in a radio address in which she said whether her life be long or short, her pledge was to always serve her nation’s people,” Britsburgh board member Kim Szczypinski said.

“It’s sad to see the end of an era, but also a new era’s evolving,” Spatz said.

For the first time in 70 years, Great Britain has a king: King Charles III.

The group acknowledged his ascension with a shout of “God Save the King.”

More on Britsburgh’s upcoming events: https://britsburgh.com/

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