Callum Morrison was doing a weed survey on a field in MacGregor when he heard over the radio playing in the background, news of the passing of Queen Elizabeth II.

Formerly of Scotland, Morrison now lives on a rural yard just of west of Altona. He says it took a little bit of time to process the news, but once it sunk in, he immediately got on the phone with his partner, followed by a phone call to his parents back in Scotland.

“Obviously, they were in shock,” said Morrison. “It made us all contemplate the last seventy years. People said when Queen Victoria died that the 19th Century didn’t end until then, and I think for a lot of us mentally, the 20th Century hasn’t truly ended until now. We’re talking about a lady who was born eight years after the end of World War I. She actually saw service in the Women’s Auxiliary in World War II, the last Head of State (from) World War Two. She has all those connections that she's seen. Not just this country, but many countries change over the years. Almost half of modern Canada's history, since 1867, has been under the reign of the Queen. So really, it's just sort of showing a changing of the guard really from one chapter to the other.”

Upon hearing the news, Morrison organized a small get together with friends at his home later that evening to reflect on the legacy of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

“I think there will be a hole left in many of us, I think a lot of people have probably taken her for granted, and not thought about her very much, but I think a lot of her power is she's just always been there for most of our lives.”

It is that constant that Morrison admired so much about Queen Elizabeth II.

“She never wanted this job. She wasn't even born with the expectation she would become queen...(but) she did her duty and pulled through, and she's always put up service to her people first,” he said. “You know, even just before she died, she was swearing in Prime Ministers. She went to the very end...I don't think we will ever see someone again like Queen Elizabeth.”

Morrison also feels much of the shock people felt over her death was due to that constant – that people felt, because she’d been there all these years, she would always be there.

“(My dad) messaged me, and said it was really emotional for him, because it was just like closing a chapter of his life. And I think a lot of people, particularly people who've taken her for granted, they haven't thought about her, but that also means they haven't thought about her passing. So, a few of my friends back home, actually either called me in tears, or told me they had physically wept. One of my friends said it was the thought, that right until the very end, she was still doing her duty and just thinking, like, ‘this lady has literally given her life’, you know?"

“For me personally, it’s not like I’ve lost a mother or a father...but I do feel like I’ve lost someone very important in my life, someone who has always been there, who I do feel genuinely did look out for the well-being of the people,” said Morrison. “Of course, it's difficult when you're in the Constitutional Monarchy. She can't lead us into battle, she can't tell people exactly what to do. But she can warn, she can consult, she can be consulted and consoling.”

Now that King Charles III has ascended the Throne, Morrison wishes nothing but the best for the new Monarch.

“I do think he cares about his people,” he said. “No one in British in history that has inherited the Throne has been this old, and because he’s the first born son, all that time he’s known he’s going to be the Monarch so, you can’t think of anyone in the world, ever, more trained for a more specific role.”

You can listen to a portion of Reporter Candace Derksen's conversation with Callum Morrison below.