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Port Authority official honored by Queen Elizabeth II reflects on her response to 9/11

Local official honored by Elizabeth II recalls her response to 9/11
Local official honored by Elizabeth II recalls her response to 9/11 02:32

NEW YORK -- Queen Elizabeth II witnessed and participated in so much history over her long life and reign, and as we prepare to commemorate the 21st anniversary of 9/11, we're taking a look back at how Elizabeth responded to the attacks.

CBS2's Tony Aiello spoke with Glenn Guzi, who escorted the queen on her only visit to Ground Zero.

It was her third and final visit to New York City in 2010. Guzi, a Port Authority official, was Elizabeth's tour guide at Ground Zero

"She was bright and inquisitive. She knew how make anyone feel at ease in her presence, but she was just a very warm, interested person," he said.

"What was her mood about visiting there? What do you remember about that day?" Aiello said.

"Both she and Prince Philip were very inquisitive in terms of what our challenges were ... Really focusing on the human aspect of our challenges and the human aspect of the toll it took on New York and the country," Guzi said.

The attacks killed almost 100 of her subjects and clearly deeply affected the queen, who broke protocol in 2001 by ordering that the Star-Spangled Banner be sung during a service at St. Paul's Cathedral in London and during the changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace.

"To have that respect paid back to the United States on such a dark day for the United States, I think, is just hugely important and telling of the person that she was," Guzi said.

Guzi has escorted many members of the royal family visiting the site and attended a garden party at Buckingham Palace with the queen.

"She and her entire family, including the now-King Charles, always had a deep appreciation for New York," Guzi said.

She clearly appreciated Guzi, including him on her 2016 list of honors. He received an MBE award for services to U.K.-U.S. relations.

"Just will always be eternally grateful for an individual who allowed me to become a bit more familiar with her," Guzi said.

Her connection to New York and grief over the attacks is enshrined in Lower Manhattan at a park she dedicated in 2010 -- the Queen Elizabeth II September 11th Garden.

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