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City of Vaughan dedicates water fountain to memory of Queen Elizabeth II
Sept. 15, 2023

The City of Vaughan has dedicated its outdoor water fountain at city hall to Queen Elizabeth II, honouring the former queen who died last year.

On Friday, Sept. 8, one year after the former queen’s death, Mayor Steven Del Duca, city councillors Marilyn Iafrate, Chris Ainsworth and regional councillor Mario Racco greeted British Consul General Fouzia Younis to unveil a plaque.

It was the previous term of council, Del Duca said, that endorsed former city councillor Sandra Yeung Racco’s motion to dedicate the fountain to the memory of the queen.

Del Duca referenced his own U.K. lineage, sharing that his mother was originally from Scotland, to demonstrate the bond of the Commonwealth.

“It is very hard for me to believe that a full year has passed since Her Majesty passed away. And some who were here today will know that while I'm very proud to have been born here in Canada and I've lived my entire life here, my mother is actually from Scotland,” Del Duca said in a news conference.

Del Duca lauded Queen Elizabeth II’s commitment to public duty in his speech.

“I cannot think of a better example of someone who lived a noble life, who put so much emphasis into the concept of duty and sacrifice and service (as) Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II,” said Del Duca.

The British consul general to Toronto, Fouzia Younis also stated the impact the death of the queen had on her.

Younis reminded everyone the importance of public duty and “servant leadership,” and held Queen Elizabeth II as a sterling example.

“I think for most of us, in fact, all of us who are here today, that's why we do what we do. We serve the public. We are servant leaders, and we are accountable to our publics,” said Younis.

“I remember I was in Islamabad, which was my last posting, and when the news first broke, I was really upset because I think it marked the past, the passing of a generation that we sort of really looked up to,” said Younis.

In her speech during the news conference, Younis mentioned that 10 per cent of Vaughan’s international investment comes from the United Kingdom.

Younis added that it felt like a passing of the torch from one generation to the next.

“It really felt like as if we were weaving from one generation to another,” she said.