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Tuesday, 9 April, 2002, 09:17 GMT 10:17 UK
'Why I'm here for the funeral'
As thousands of people gather outside Westminster Abbey in London for the Queen Mother's funeral, BBC News Online asks some why they have turned out.

Intt and Karelle Douglas

Intt, Karelle and Shernett Douglas
From left, Intt, Karelle and Shernett Douglas
Karelle: I came out of a sense of duty. The Queen Mother was a good woman and good women should be celebrated.

Having seen the news coverage over the week, it's become clear that she was also a loved mother and grandmother. I've seen how the Queen is suffering and I wanted to show her my support.

Intt: My great-grandfather was Scottish, just like the Queen Mother. I feel both her age and her birthplace tie the Queen Mother to my own roots. All things Scottish are a part of me.

Ellen Mallen and Marian Baker

Marian Baker and Ellen Mallen
Marian Baker, left, and Ellen Mallen
Ellen: Marian and I planned this trip a long time ago and were lucky - or unlucky - enough to be in the UK for this sad event. I was born here and the Royals have visited Ontario many times, so I do follow them.

If I'd been at home I'd have gotten up early to watch the Queen Mother's funeral on TV, but I'm glad I'm here. How often in a lifetime do you get to be at an event as historic as this? The crowds have been great, [and although] there's sadness everyone's been so nice.

Mary Fisher and Ron Younger

Mary Fisher and Ron Younger
Mary Fisher and Ron Younger
Mary: I'd much rather be here than watch it on TV. The atmosphere is great. People of all ages are here from all over the country and all walks of life - I'm from Ireland, this gentleman's from Scotland, this young lad's from Devon. There's such a rapport between everybody. Why can't it be like this all the time?

Ron: The Queen Mother was the honorary colonel of the London Scottish Territorial Army for 67 years and many of us old comrades have come out to see her. She was a wonderful old lady and people are turning out in such numbers because they had respect for her. I'm bar steward for the London Scottish and I'm sure we'll be toasting her memory tonight.

The Brice family

From left, Natasha, Zamira, Ashley and Sebastian Brice
Natasha, Zamira, Ashley and Sebastian Brice
Natasha: We woke up at 5.30am to get here on time. We got up at 4am yesterday to see the Queen Mum lying-in-state.

Paul: I had said coming here wasn't such a good idea, but the children threatened dire things if I didn't bring them. We're not royal fanatics, and didn't shed tears when she died, but we had lots of respect for her.

I'm really surprised we got so close to the Abbey. Sitting the children by the railings was my priority, since I was worried I might lose them in the crowd. I brought colouring books to keep them occupied - though they've spent most of the morning fighting. I'm sure they'll become more sombre later in the day.


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