King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands is in mourning after the son of his best friend died.
Jan de Beaufort, 19, died on 9 May. He was the son of the King’s best friend, Frans de Beaufort.
Jan de Beaufort was a student at the University of Utrecht, where he was taking veterinary courses. No cause of death has been announced.
King Willem-Alexander put an obituary message in NRC over the weekend. The message said: “The atmosphere will never be the same without you. We are going to miss you so incredibly. Our hearts go out to your sweet, warm, happy family. Know that we will always be there for them.”
It was signed by ‘Alexander’, Máxima, Amalia, Alexia and Ariane. Other friends of Beaufort also signed the letter in the newspaper.
The King and Beaufort have been friends for many years, and Beaufort’s mother served as a governess for Princess Beatrix.
Frans de Beaufort was one of the witnesses at Willem-Alexander and Máxima’s 2001 wedding. Willem-Alexander served as the master of ceremonies for Frans’s wedding to Suzanne in 1997. Frans is also a godfather to the King and Queen’s second child, Princess Alexia.