Sep 18, 2022 - Politics & Policy

Biden remembers Queen Elizabeth as "decent, honorable and all about service"

President Biden, accompanied by the first lady Jill Biden, signs a book of condolences at Lancaster House in London on Sept. 18. Photo: Jonathan Hordle-WPA Pool/Getty Images

President Biden offered condolences Sunday on the passing of Queen Elizabeth II, saying her loss "leaves a giant hole."

Driving the news: "I think what she gave is a sense of, maybe above all, the notion of service," Biden said after signing the book of condolences. "There’s something within our capacity to do that can make things — not just the world better, but your neighborhood better, your household better, your workplace better. And that, that’s what she communicated to me."

  • The president reflected upon meeting the queen when he visited Windsor Castle last summer, saying she was "the same in person" as her image: "decent, honorable and all about service."
  • He said she reminded him of his own mother: "She had that look like, “Are you OK? Anything I can do for you? What do you need?” And then also, “Make sure you do what you’re supposed to do.” 

What's next: The president and first lady attended a reception with King Charles and other international leaders on Sunday and will attend the state funeral on Monday.

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