SBA Police Sergeant Andreas Constantinou has been speaking of the pride he felt in being selected to represent the force at Her Majesty the Queen’s funeral in September.
The 20-year veteran of the SBA Police said it was difficult to put into words how he felt by being part of such an historical event, that was estimated to have been watched by approximately five billion people worldwide.
Speaking of his initial reaction and subsequent feelings he felt on the day, he said: “I was very honoured to be nominated to attend the Queen’s funeral. My initial reaction to the invitation couldn’t have been more positive but as it was obviously short notice, all the preparation was done lightning-fast.
“No words can describe the feelings of taking part as I had so many feelings passing through me. I was feeling sad for the great leader, happy and honoured for being part of that historical event and responsible as a representative of SBA Police.
“One of the moments I will never forget is when the two minutes silence to pay respect to the Queen started, I closed my eyes for a few seconds and even though in front of me there were thousands of people, it was so quiet that I was feeling I was alone in my room. It felt strange when I then opened my eyes and I suddenly saw all these people in front of me.”
Sergeant Constantinou’s day started at 4am, when he was collected by a Metropolitan Police officer to take him for a briefing, before making his way to Buckingham Palace where he was posted for the day.
“I think it’s one of the proudest moments in my service, not only because the SBA Police trusted me with this heavy but honourable duty and the trust and respect officers showed me whilst there, it was also for living and feeling the respect and love the people had for Her Majesty,” he said.
The proud sergeant also revealed he got ‘goosebumps’ after hearing the reaction from his wife and children and he was keen to thank everyone for the trust that was shown in him.
He said: “It was a once in a lifetime experience attending and being part of the funeral of this great leader and I am so grateful for the trust shown in me.”