Twenty-seven public safety officers were awarded medals during the Queen’s birthday celebration on Friday. (Photo: PROVIDED)

In a small, private ceremony held Friday at Government House, officials celebrated the 95th birthday of Queen Elizabeth II while announcing medals for public safety officers.

Twenty-seven officers were awarded seven different medals, ranging from 18 years of service to 25 years of service (see sidebar).

Governor John Rankin delivered the royal greeting at the beginning of the morning ceremony.

“I am pleased to welcome you all this morning to this event to mark the official birthday of Her Majesty the Queen, and to present long-service and good-conduct medals to members of the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force, Her Majesty’s Prison Service and our Fire and Rescue Services,” he said.

He added that Queen Elizabeth II is the longest-reigning monarch and longest-ever serving female monarch in the world.

“In her broadcast speech to the Commonwealth in 1947, the Queen, as then Princess Elizabeth, said the following: ‘I declare before you all that my whole life, whether it be long or short, shall be devoted to your service,’” the governor said. “Her Majesty has more than lived up to that pledge and has been, and remains, an example of duty to which we can all but aspire.”

Prince Philip

Mr. Rankin also offered condolences for Prince Philip, who died naturally on April 9, about two months before his 100th birthday. Prince Philip and the Queen were married for 70 years.

“People all over the world, including here in the Virgin Islands, join together in mourning his death and offering our deep condolences to Her Majesty,” Mr. Rankin said. “The Queen, following a period of mourning, is back on her duty.”

Mr. Rankin also read aloud the birthday wishes he sent to the Queen on behalf of the territory.

“May it please Your Majesty with humble duty on the behalf of all Her Majesty’s loyal subjects in the Virgin Islands, I am delighted to convey our good wishes and most loyal affectionate greetings on the occasion of Your Majesty’s 95th birthday,” he read.

Then he read a response from Buckingham Palace, which stated that the Queen sends her “warm good wishes especially during this difficult time.”

The governor then switched notes to begin commemorating the 27 public safety officers (see sidebar).

HONOUREES

Overseas Territories Police Forces Medal for Long Service and Good Conduct – 18 years

Sergeant Gilbert Charles

Sergeant Lina Francis-Richardson

Sergeant Sean McCall

Sergeant Angeline Samuel-Stevens

Sergeant Nicholas Tranquille

Constable Victoria Charles

Constable Tommy Daniel

Constable Gleason L. Lafeuille

First Clasp to the Overseas Territories Police Forces Medal for Long Service and Good Conduct – 25 years

Inspector Antoine John

Sergeant Kendolph Bobb

Sergeant Claire Demming

Sergeant Stany Francis

Constable Alvin Bolton

Constable Calvert Romney

Constable Agetta Smith

Second Clasp to the Overseas Territories Police Forces Medal for Long Service and Good Conduct – 30 years

Superintendent St. Clair Amory

Chief Inspector Dariel Robinson

Constable Mary Phillip

First Clasp to the Overseas Territories Prison Service Medal for Long Service and Good Conduct – 25 years

Acting Superintendent Royston Percival

Matron Jacqueline Lake-Bell

Overseas Territories Fire and Rescue Brigade Medal for Long Service and Good Conduct – 18 years

Leading Fire Officer Gabriel Winchester

Fire Officer Alston Richardson
Fire Officer Dinsley Samuel

First Clasp to the Overseas Territories Fire and Rescue Brigade Medal for Long Service and Good Conduct – 25 years

Leading Fire Officer A. Gaston Walters

Fire Officer Cuthbert Robinson


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