The Japanese Imperial Family is in mourning as it has been announced that Crown Princess Kiko’s father has died.
Tatsuhiko Kawashima died at the age of 81 on 4 November after having been hospitalised since 19 October, according to the Imperial Household Agency.
He was admitted to Tokyo’s St. Luke’s International Hospital on 19 October and was visited by Crown Princess Kiko, Princess Mako and Princess Kako several times privately.
The immediate family of Crown Princess Kiko will now enter a period of mourning. Crown Prince Akishino will be in a mourning period for seven days, while the Crown Princess is in mourning for 90 days. The couple’s two remaining royal children, Princess Kako and Prince Hisahito, will be in mourning for 30 days. Their daughter, Mako Komuro, is no longer a member of the Imperial Family, so she will not have to observe official mourning with the Imperial Family.
His death comes just a week after his granddaughter, the former Princess Mako, wed her college sweetheart, Kei Komuro. Mako had to leave the Imperial Family and give up her royal status by law.
Hirokazu Matsuno, Japan’s top government spokesperson, praised Kawashima for his work in education, as well as his humanitarian and government work. In a press conference, he said: “I’d like to offer my heartfelt condolences and prayers.”
Kawashima was an economics professor emeritus at Gakushuin University and lived for years in Gakushuin University’s faculty dormitory with his family. He obtained a master’s degree from the university and studied abroad, earning a doctorate from the distinguished Ivy League University of Pennsylvania in the United States. He taught at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania for a year before moving back to Tokyo and teaching at Gakushuin University.