In October 2021, Queen Elizabeth II placed a secret message inside the Commonwealth Games baton and presented it to four-time British Paralympic gold medalist Kadeena Cox.
It marked the start of a 294-day, 140,000-kilometer journey from Buckingham Palace to Birmingham, across 72 nations and territories.
The baton tour began in the hands of Her Majesty and ended with those of her son, now King Charles III, who spoke for the Queen, patroness of the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF), at the opening ceremony in July.
Dame Louise Martin now holds the position of president of the CGF, a title held by the late Prince Philip for more than 30 years. Her was one of the many tributes that came when news of the Queen’s death spread throughout the Commonwealth.
“It is with deep sorrow that we learn of the death of our Patroness, Her Majesty the Queen,” he said.
“Throughout his long life and reign, his extraordinary dedication and service to the Commonwealth has been an inspiration to so many, including all of our Commonwealth Games athletes and officials.
“Her Majesty’s vision for the Commonwealth as a family of diverse and united nations will continue to inspire us and will remain our mission and duty to benefit all athletes and communities, through the power of sport.
“Our thoughts and prayers go out to His Majesty the King, the Queen Consort and all members of the royal family as we join citizens across the Commonwealth in mourning her loss at this very sad time.”
It was a sentiment shared by Birmingham 2022 organizing committee chairman John Crabtree, who said, “We pay tribute to his life of service and his commitment to the Commonwealth and its shared values.
“The Queen was a staunch supporter of the Games during her reign, which included 18 editions from Vancouver in 1954 to Birmingham in 2022, and her passing will be mourned by participants and supporters around the world.”
Cox, meanwhile, tweeted his condolences twice, first writing “OMG, RIP the beautiful Queen” then, along with images of the baton relay, “The longest reigning monarch. Queen Elizabeth you were fantastic and you always wore your beautiful dresses with your fantastic smile. I am so grateful to have met you on more than one occasion and to be part of your jubilee parade! Rest in Heaven. “
The first Commonwealth Games, then called the British Empire Games, were held in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada in 1930.
A Commonwealth Sport Canada tweet read: “Immensely saddened to learn of the death of the Commonwealth Games patron, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. @CwthSportCAN we express our deepest condolences and condolences to His Majesty the King, the Queen Consort and all members of the royal family at this time.
The National Hockey League (NHL), meanwhile, released a poignant tribute to Her Majesty featuring footage from the Queen’s discus throwing ceremonial during a 2002 competition between the Vancouver Canucks and San Jose Sharks.
Her Majesty was escorted to the red carpet by NHL Hall of Fame member Wayne Gretzky.
A statement reads: “The National Hockey League mourns the passing and celebrates the extraordinary life of Queen Elizabeth II. She has held a special place in the hearts of Canadians and, during her 70-year reign, she has connected to our game in memorable ways. “
It was the first NHL game the Queen has watched since 1951 when, still a princess, she and Prince Philip saw the Montreal Canadiens face the New York Rangers.
As New Zealanders woke to news of the Queen’s death, the Twitter account of the New Zealand team, representing the country’s Olympic and Commonwealth Games teams, posted: “We are deeply saddened to learn of Her Majesty’s death. Queen Elizabeth II. The New Zealand Olympic Committee extends its deepest condolences to the royal family and people of the United Kingdom. 1926 – 2022 “.
Shortly after the announcement of Friday’s South Africa decisive test match against England, Cricket South Africa tweeted: “Cricket South Africa would like to extend its deepest condolences to the royal family, the UK and the Commonwealth in general.
“We are saddened by the death of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. Our thoughts are with the whole royal family ”.
Australia’s national rugby team Wallabies, meanwhile, posted: “The Wallabies join the rest of the world in mourning the loss of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. RIP “