President Biden and first lady Jill Biden remembered Queen Elizabeth II Thursday as a “steadying presence” for generations of Britons and a “stateswoman of unmatched dignity.”
The Bidens said the UK’s longest-reigning monarch “defined an era” in a statement released by the White House.
The beloved figurehead died in Balmoral Thursday at the age of 96.
“In a world of constant change, she was a steadying presence and a source of comfort and pride for generations of Britons, including many who have never known their country without her,” the statement said.
“An enduring admiration for Queen Elizabeth II united people across the Commonwealth,” it continued.
“The seven decades of her history-making reign bore witness to an age of unprecedented human advancement and the forward march of human dignity.”
The first couple insisted the queen was the first British monarch “to whom people all around the world could feel a personal and immediate connection” — whether they “heard her on the radio as a young princess” or “watched her final Christmas speech or her Platinum Jubilee on their phones.”
The pair then praised her unshakable ability to rally her people.
With her husband, Prince Philip, who died in April 2021, by her side, the president and first lady said the queen “endured the dangers and deprivations of a world war alongside the British people and rallied them during the devastation of a global pandemic to look to better days ahead.”
The Bidens also applauded her commitment to philanthropic causes that “uplifted people and expanded opportunity.”
“By showing friendship and respect to newly independent nations around the world, she elevated the cause of liberty and fostered enduring bonds that helped strengthen the Commonwealth, which she loved so deeply, into a community to promote peace and shared values.,” the couple said.
The first couple also hailed the beloved monarch’s commitment to the US, saying she “deepened the bedrock Alliance between the United Kingdom and the United States.”
“She helped make our relationship special,” they said.
President Biden recalled meeting the queen for the first time as a senator in 1982, and then again in June 2021 after he became the commander-in-chief.
”She charmed us with her wit, moved us with her kindness, and generously shared with us her wisdom,” Biden said in the statement.
”All told, she met 14 American presidents. She helped Americans commemorate both the anniversary of the founding of Jamestown and the bicentennial of our independence. And she stood in solidarity with the United States during our darkest days after 9/11, when she poignantly reminded us that ’Grief is the price we pay for love,’” the statement said.
The president said the White House looks to continue the close relationship with King Charles III.
“Today, the thoughts and prayers of people all across the United States are with the people of the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth in their grief. We send our deepest condolences to the Royal Family, who are not only mourning their Queen, but their dear mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother,” Biden said.
“Her legacy will loom large in the pages of British history, and in the story of our world,” he added.