'It's a big job': Queen's Fijian pallbearer's proud family watch from afar

One of the Queen's pallbearers, Ben Tubuna, comes from a remote village only accessible by boat. ITV News correspondent John Irvine spoke to his proud family.

The British have left quite an impression on Fiji.

Alongside the sports introduced to the island, the respect for the monarchy is a mainstay in the country.

Fiji's motto remains “Fear God and honour the Queen.”

Queen Elizabeth II first visited Fiji in 1953 during a six-month worldwide tour and she returned a further five times.

The only way to access Ben Tubuna's village is by boat, there are no roads at all. Credit: ITV News

Fiji was one of her favourite destinations, visiting on six occasions, putting it joint fourth on her list of most-visited countries.

The country provided one of the Queen’s pallbearers, Ben Tubuna, who comes from a remote village only accessible by boat.

“I feel great, I feel happy,” Ben’s father Semi Tubuna told ITV News. “First time, for me, to hear that he is one that is chosen from a big country like that, I cry.

"The whole nation of Fiji, I can say, we are all proud.”

Ben Tubana's father, Semi, said when he learned his son would be one of the Queen's pallbearers he cried.

Semi spoke to his son while ITV News were visiting his home village.

“He told me that he was tired, that he wants to sleep and rest. [It's] a big job that they have done. He told me the Major called me to make a celebration for him and he attended, just a small package to thank him for the great job he has done."

Since it became a republic in 1987, Fiji has been suspended from the Commonwealth on three occasions.

“We wouldn’t be where we are without the British monarchy and we cannot thank them enough for what they’ve done, the British government, the UK," Sofia Kanaimawi, who met the Queen three times, told ITV News. "They mean very much to us.”

The Fijian flag is one of only four countries to use union jack in emblem, and it's currently, appropriately, at half mast.

The remarkable life of the Queen remembered and the King's inaugural speech analysed in our latest episodes of What You Need To Know