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European RoyalsThe Netherlands

Shock still runs deep in Lech five years after Prince Friso’s accident

The shock after Prince Friso was buried under an avalanche still “runs very deep”, says Mayor Ludwig Muxel of the Austrian town Lech. The local newspaper Vorarlberger Nachrichten dedicated much of their edition to the five-year anniversary of Prince Friso’s accident. Prince Friso of Orange-Nassau was the brother of King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands.

Mayor Muxel told the newspaper that he had known the Prince since his childhood and he remembers the days after the accident as a very stressful time as many were worried about the Prince’s health.

Prince Friso of Orange-Nassau was the brother of King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands. On 17 February 2012, he was buried underneath an avalanche during the family’s annual ski holiday. He was buried for approximately 25 minutes, following by 50 minutes of CPR. At the time the Prince’s condition was described as “stable, but critical.” He spent the first few days in the Landeskrankenhaus in Innsbruck, before being transferred to London, where his family also lived before the accident. He was transferred to the Netherlands in the summer of 2013.

Prince Friso died 18 months after his accident at Huis Ten Bosch in the Netherlands, without ever regaining full consciousness. Doctors had stated that the chances of a full recovery had been very minimal. He was buried on 16 August 2013 after a private funeral. The only foreign royal to attend was King Harald V of Norway, who was Prince Friso’s godfather.

Despite Prince Friso’s accident, the family returns to Lech every year. Prince Friso mother, Princess Beatrix, has already arrived for this year’s holiday. King Willem-Alexander and his family are expected to arrive at the end of next week. King Willem-Alexander’s second daughter, Princess Alexia, broke her leg during last year’s holiday in Lech and will get a chance to see if the break has fully healed.