‘It was a very big thing for us’: Houston man recalls working as security for Queen Elizabeth during her 1991 visit in Houston

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HOUSTON – People all over Houston are looking back on the life of Queen Elizabeth and how she has made an impact in their lives.

A Houston area man said he had quite the responsibility during the Queen’s visit three decades ago.

“It was a very big thing for us, especially in the Houston field office,” explained Former Special Agent for the US Secret Service, James Napolitano. “I was pretty young. I had five years at the Secret Service at that time.”

That big thing was a visit from Queen Elizabeth and Prince Phillip. Napolitano was assigned to help with security for some of the events the Queen was attending, as well as to help escort them to and from the airplane.

“Dealing with the Queen was a little nerve-wracking. A lot of that was how do you address them? How do you speak to her when she speaks to you? What do you call her?” asked Napolitano. “I had to do a lot of research. So, there was a lot of that being briefed up by our department to make sure we didn’t make mistakes addressing the Queen when she was here.”

He recalls many moments during that visit, including when she was leaving Houston to head to Dallas.

“There was quite a crowd cheering her and she went and shook some hands,” Napolitano said.

He said she was cordial and greeted them every time they interacted.

“She said good morning, good afternoon, and good evening at the events,” Napolitano said.

He was amazed at how Houston embraced the Royals and made them feel at home.

“She was treated more like a superstar,” Napolitano said.

He said he was lucky to have been able to be a part of that iconic visit and will never forget those moments engraved in history.

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