Queen Elizabeth II visited New York City 3 times during her reign

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Friday, September 9, 2022
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CeFaan Kim was in Lower Manhattan where a vigil at the garden in Hanover Square paid tribute to Queen Elizabeth II on Thursday night.

NEW YORK (WABC) -- Queen Elizabeth II's legacy has touched mourners around the world, including in New York City, where she visited three times over the course of her monarchy.

Britain's longest-reigning monarch was last in NYC more than 12 years ago on July 6, 2010.

She visited Ground Zero and addressed the United Nations for the first time since 1957.

The first trip to the United Nations was also her first visit to the city. On that visit she rode a ferry.

Her second visit was in 1976, when she marked the 200th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence from Britain at Federal Hall, with then Mayor Abe Beame. She also shopped at Bloomingdale's.

Her third visit also happened to be where a vigil took place Thursday night. Flowers and heavy hearts filled the September 11th Garden in what was a solemn occasion.

In July 2010, after delivering a short 8-minute speech at the U.N., the queen took a reflective half-hour stroll through Ground Zero and the nearby garden, created as a memorial to the 67 Britons killed in the terror attacks.

At the garden in Hanover Square, she met with relatives of the victims before cutting a ribbon to formally open the Queen Elizabeth September 11th Garden.

WATCH | New Yorkers mourn loss of Queen Elizabeth II

It combines the historic footprint of the public square with the silhouette of the British Isles.

"Obviously there are so many things in the world at the moment that divide us, and separate us, this is, I hope and think, a pure human moment, and for young people, I think that's the really important thing here -- young people seeing adults coming together," said co-CFO of the garden Daniel Allen. "Young people learning and seeing and understanding that this person has been around for 30% of the entire history of the United States...that is unlikely to happen ever again."

During her visit to Ground Zero, she met with then-Mayor Michael Bloomberg and governors David Paterson and Chris Christie.

"I had the privilege of meeting Queen Elizabeth II on July 6, 2010 when I was serving as Governor and she toured the World Trade Center site," Paterson said in a statement. "It was 98 degrees that day and when I greeted her I said that we wanted her to have a warm reception but maybe this was excessive...and she laughed! She was apparently famous for not changing expressions and I had the unique privilege of making her laugh! the Queen's grace and humility belied her tremendous presence and exceptional leadership. She will be greatly missed."

"Throughout her life, Queen Elizabeth II personified duty: to her family, to her country, and to the world," Bloomberg said. "From an unimaginably young age, she united the United Kingdom and Commonwealth countries, holding together societies that faced immense and rapid changes. As a frequent visitor to London over the past four decades, I have seen the respect she commanded from the British people. I was honored to celebrate her extraordinary 70-year reign during the Platinum Jubilee in June, and to support the Queen's Green Canopy and other cultural and charitable causes that were so important to her. Her 2010 visit to New York City to dedicate a Lower Manhattan garden to the Commonwealth victims of the 9/11 attacks was a special moment for our city, and receiving an honorary knighthood from her was a moment that I will always remember with great appreciation for the deep ties that bind our countries together. I join the people of the U.K. and all of its friends in honoring her life."

In addition to the vigil at the garden, other tributes were paid to Queen Elizabeth including the Empire State Building which was lit up in purple with a silver sparkle.

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