WHEELING, W.Va. (WTRF) – As the rest of the world mourns the loss of Queen Elizabeth II, residents in the Ohio Valley are also processing the news.

Clare McDonald was born in Britain, but moved to Pittsburgh in 1985, and then to Wheeling in 1997.
Like many others in her home country, she’s coming to terms with the loss of a head of state that was around her entire life.

She points out that in just the span of a few days, Britain went from having a Queen and a male Prime Minister, to a King and a female Prime Minister. But despite waves of loyalty and dissatisfaction with the monarchy among the British over the years, with time, there emerged a great satisfaction and respect toward the Queen herself.

“There was a lot of pressure I think on her all her life to handle this job, which nobody really thanks you for I’m sure. But that’s what she did, and she did it with grace and dignity, and I think that inspired a lot of people in terms of their loyalty towards her as a person.”

Clare McDonald, Wheeling resident, born in England

McDonald saw Queen Elizabeth in person when she was 11. The Queen came to open up her school, and McDonald says she vividly remembers the monarch’s emerald green coat and hat. Her father was supposed to teach a class in front of the Queen, but he got sick and couldn’t be there.