Commonwealth Games Australia is saddened by the passing of Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II.
Commonwealth Games Australia mourns the passing of Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II, aged 96.
A tremendous supporter of the Commonwealth Games and the Commonwealth Sport Movement, Her Majesty served as Patron of the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) and for the Commonwealth Games.
The Commonwealth Games Federation President Dame Louise Martin shared a statement on Her Majesty’s passing.
“It is with profound sorrow that we learn of the passing of our Patron, Her Majesty The Queen,” Dame Louise Martin said.
“Throughout her long life and reign, her extraordinary dedication and service to the Commonwealth has been an inspiration to so many, including all our Commonwealth Games athletes and officials.
“Her Majesty’s vision for the Commonwealth as a diverse and united family of nations will continue to inspire us – and will remain our mission and duty for the benefit of all athletes and communities, through the power of sport.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with His Majesty The King, The Queen Consort and all members of the Royal Family as we join with citizens across the Commonwealth in mourning her loss at this very sad time.”
Commonwealth Games Australia President Ben Houston shared a message of mourning for Her Majesty and celebrated her service to the Commonwealth Sport Movement.
“On behalf of Commonwealth Games Australia, our board and our member sports, we mourn the passing of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II,” Houston said.
“As Patron, Her Majesty was a tremendous supporter of the Commonwealth Sport Movement, as evident with Queen’s baton messages from 16 Games, a tradition that began at the Cardiff 1958 Games, with messages that celebrated the uniting of the Commonwealth through sport and acknowledging the role that our athletes play to inspire our nations.
“Her Majesty attended both the 1982 Commonwealth Games held in Brisbane and again at the 2006 Commonwealth Games held in Melbourne, adding to the nation’s excitement for the Games, meeting with Australian athletes and officials at both Games.
“We will continue to honour and champion Her Majesty’s vision for the Commonwealth Sport Movement and the important role that sport plays to unite and inspire us.
“We join with citizens across the Commonwealth in mourning her passing at this very sad time.”
The Queen’s close association with the Commonwealth Games as patron is embodied in its most enduring symbol, a Baton which carries her message of greeting to the athletes.
It was for the 1958 Games that were to be held in Cardiff, and arrangements were in hand for the Queen to attend, but there was also to be an innovation as the Games approached.
The Queen was to consign a message to a ceremonial Baton which was to be conveyed by relay runners to Cardiff.
Here the words were to be read as the climax of the Opening Ceremony.
In the words of the official protocol instructions, the athlete carrying the message will enter the arena and run around the track to the saluting dais and hand the baton to the Duke who will open it and read it to the assembled company.
It has been a tradition that has been celebrated at every Commonwealth Games since, most recently at the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games that were celebrated last month.
In 2006, the Games in Melbourne were to be opened by the Queen, the first time she would do so on Australian soil.
It was also the year she celebrated her 80th birthday, so organisers incorporated some special elements in the Ceremony.
Harry White a Youth Ambassador for “Plan Australia” delivered a special greeting.
“Your majesty during the past 54 years of your reign, you have been the glue that has held us all together in the great Commonwealth of nations, in good times and bad times, the love and great affection that we all hold for you is spread across one-third of the world’s population, in our Commonwealth,” he said.
He then introduced New Zealand’s soprano Dame Kiri Te Kanawa to sing Happy Birthday.
We extend our sincere condolences to The Royal Family.