Sunday, 29 November 2009

At the road’s end: Prince Alexandre of Belgium (1942-2009)

The Belgian Royal Court this evening announced the sudden death of Prince Alexandre, King Albert II’s half-brother, from an acute pulmonary embolism.
His Royal Highness Prince Alexandre Emmanuel Henri Albert Marie Léopold of Belgium was born on 18 July 1942 as the eldest child of the controversial union between King Léopold III and Lilian Baels. King Léopold, who had been widowed in 1935 when the adored Queen Astrid was killed in a car crash, married Lilian Baels in 1941 while held captive by the Germans after he had refused to follow his government into exile. These actions eventually led to the King’s abdication in 1951.
Prince Alexandre, a businessman who was not in line to the Belgian throne, married Léa Wolman in 1991, but the marriage was kept secret until 1998. The couple had no children, although the Princess has two children and a grandson from her previous marriages.


  1. I think he lived a relatively long life, that said particularly despite of being sickly from the beginning. 67 years is not at all an early age to pass away. I think many healthy persons could die in their 67th year or earlier.

    As to that, I hope he had a good life.

    His eldest brother, king Baudouin, also died when in sixties.

    I would rather congratulate their middle brother, king Albert II, for surviving and being well able to work, in his seventies as he is now - and hope he will live several years more, and have a long and good life.
    King Albert actually is an exception in the survival department, compared with his two brothers.

  2. 67 years is about ten years younger than average life expectancy for men in Western Europe. King Baudouin did indeed die from a heart attack when he was 62 and King Albert did undergo a bypass operation in 2000, but if you look at their immediate family, most have lived to a rather old age. Their mother was killed at 29 and their paternal grandfather at 58, but their sister lived to 77, their father to 81, their paternal grandmother to 89, their maternal grandparents to 90 and 79, their father's brother to 79 and his sister to 94, while their mother's siblings lived to 77, 53 and 92. (I would by the way prefer if people would sign their comments).


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