Death of Prince Alexandre
Prince Alexandre of Belgium passed away this morning, aged 67, due to an acute pulmonary embolism; the news has been officially confirmed by the Royal Palace.
The Prince was born on 18 July 1942 in Laeken; he was the son of King Leopold III of Belgium (1901-1983) and his second wife, Princess Lilian, Princess de Rethy, née Baels (1916-2002). Prince Alexander had two younger sisters, Princess Esmeralda and Princess Marie Christine, and three elder half-siblings, the children of the King and his first wife, Queen Astrid: the late Grand-Duchess Josephine-Charlotte of Luxembourg, the late King Baudouin I of the Belgians and the present King Albert II.
When Prince Alexandre was 2, the Germans forced the Royal Family to move to Germany and Austria; at the end of the World War II, King Leopold and his family moved to Switzerland, where they lived during the so-called Royal Question, ended in 1951 with the abdication of King Leopold in favour of his son Baudouin. They returned in Belgium one year before, when a referendum allowed them to do.
During his youth, Prince Alexandre lived very privately, far from the public life although he was raised as a Prince of Belgium, in order to make him able to assume official tasks; he studied medicine, and after that he worked in the trade field.
Prince Alexandre married in Debenham on 14 March 1991 the twice divorced Lea Wolman (born in 1951); they had no children together, but Princess Alexandre has two children, a son and a daughter, from her two previous marriages. They kept the marriage secret until 1998, because apparently the Prince feared a bad reaction from his mother, Princess Lilian.
Although it is not clear if the Prince and his two sisters had rights to the Belgian Throne, because of the circumstances of the marriage of Leopold III and Princess Lilian, Prince Alexandre lost his (eventual) rights marrying secretly: in fact article 85 of the Belgian Constitution deprives of all the rights all the descendants of King Leopold I who marry without the permission of the King.
Prince and Princess Alexandre worked in these last years in the social field, through their “Fonds d’Entraide Prince et Princesse Alexandre de Belgique”, a foundation that financially supports several organizations acting in the social and medical field against cancer, disabilities and anorexia.
Prince Alexandre suffered of heart problems since he was young, as well as several members of the Belgian Royal Family (both King Leopold III and King Baudouin died of heart issues), and he underwent heart surgery in the USA when he was 15. His open-heart operation induced Princess Lilian to become interested in medicine, and to create the “Fondation cardiologique Princesse Lilian”.Belgium
Tagged Biography, Death, Prince Alexandre of Belgium.