Prince Charles has saluted Victoria and Victorians with a heartfelt message as the state continues its coronavirus pandemic battle.
The 3-minute video from his home in Clarence House was posted on Tuesday.
The prince began by saying he “had always felt a special fondness for Victoria”, recalling how he had spent six-months schooling at Geelong Grammar when he was young and explored the state.
“I know that Victorians, like all Australians, are tenacious and resilient, or indeed, as you might say in Australia, made of tough stuff,” he said.
“My wife and I have endless admiration for your seemingly unceasing capacity for good humour in the face of great hardship.”
He went on to acknowledge, though, how that capacity has been sorely tested over the past year.
“No sooner than the dreadful summer bushfires are over, than you find yourselves grappling with this pernicious and unpredictable virus,” he said.
“I can only imagine how incredibly hard it must be for you all, that having had such early success in combatting the virus you now find yourselves in the midst of this second wave, with all its heartbreaking consequences for so many people’s lives, livelihoods and businesses.”
Prince Charles then recounted how he himself has suffered from Covid-19, the illness brought about by the novel coronavirus.
“My heart goes out to all currently battling the disease, those caring for them, either at home or in your first-class healthcare system, and those who have so tragically lost their loved ones,” he said.
The heir to the British throne saluted workers and business owners who have paid the price of “necessary social restrictions”. He also paid tribute to the “vital job” of “essential workers” in health, care, transport and supermarkets.
“To all of you, I just wanted to say on behalf of my wife and myself, that you are so much in our special thoughts in what I can well imagine is a tremendously testing and frustrating time, and that we care deeply about what you’re having to go through,” he continued.
Prince Charles then quoted Australian poet Victor Daley: “You will soon see sorrow go down with the sun.”
“These difficult and often soul-destroying days will surely pass, and we have no doubt that Victoria will emerge stronger than ever,” he concluded.