© 2023 All Rights reserved WUSF
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

Hear a Dunedin resident and British native share his thoughts on Queen Elizabeth's death

Messages, flowers and candles at the gates of Buckingham Palace with a photo of Queen Elizabeth in the middle.
Kirsty Wigglesworth
Messages, flowers and candles are seen at the gates of Buckingham Palace in London, Friday, Sept. 9, 2022.

John Charles said Queen Elizabeth had a profound impact on his life ever since he saw her as a teenager.

The world is mourning the death of Queen Elizabeth, just a year after her husband Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, died in 2021.

John Charles, 59, is a Dunedin resident who runs a group called Tampa Bay British, which organizes social gatherings for local ex-pats.

Charles moved to the states from the UK in 1987 and has lived in Pinellas County since 1993. He sells luxury cars and considers himself a "royalist," so he's greatly saddened by the queen's loss.

In this audio postcard, Charles shares his thought on seeing the queen as a teenager, and the impact she had on his life and so many others.

My name is John Charles. I grew up in North Wales, and I remember seeing Queen Elizabeth when I was 13 when she visited Wrexham for her Silver Jubilee tour.

I can remember her getting out of a black Jaguar, wearing her yellow dress and yellow hat.

Like many expatriates in Dunedin and Tampa Bay, we have only known her as our Monarch. And with her passing, it feels like a part of our life is gone.

She led an amazing and inspiring life. Her dedication and commitment to the crown and commonwealth cannot be surpassed.

She will be dearly missed. There was many of us saying, she gets to be with her duke again.

You can read more about Queen Elizabeth's death here.

three men looking into the camera and smiling
John Charles
John Charles, 59, left, is a Dunedin resident who runs a group called Tampa Bay British, which organizes social gatherings for local ex-pats.

I wasn't always a morning person. After spending years as a nighttime sports copy editor and page designer, I made the move to digital editing in 2000. Turns out, it was one of the best moves I've ever made.
I cover health care for WUSF and the statewide journalism collaborative Health News Florida. I’m passionate about highlighting community efforts to improve the quality of care in our state and make it more accessible to all Floridians. I’m also committed to holding those in power accountable when they fail to prioritize the health needs of the people they serve.