Friso Privately Buried On Friday
Prince Friso will be privately buried on Friday in Lage Vuursche, in the municipality of Baarn. That was announced by the Government Information Service (RVD).
Prince Friso died Monday at age 44 from the effects of the skiing accident he had in the Austrian Lech in February 2012. He grew up with his brothers Constantijn and Willem-Alexander at Castle Drakensteyn, which is located near Lage Vuursche and borders the site where is the church called the Stulpkerk. He will be laid to rest at the cemetery that surrounds the church.
Lage Vuursche already crowded
Around the Stulpkerk in Lage Vuursche, where Prince Friso Friday will be buried, it was Tuesday already a coming and going of interested people. Local residents and day trippers already took a look and spoke almost unanimously their sympathy to Friso's wife Princess Mabel and their two young daughters and Friso's mother, Princess Beatrix.
According to a local resident, Princess Beatrix is already at Drakensteyn. She saw the Princess in Lage Vuursche on Tuesday afternoon in the company of her daughter-in-law Mabel, the two granddaughters Luana and Zaria and her youngest son, Prince Constantijn. The fact that the gates of the castle are guarded by the military police seems to confirm the presence of the former Queen.
Friso is privately buried in the cemetery around the Stulpkerk. The service will be led by Reverend Carel ter Linden. The small cemetery around the church, which is normally freely accessible, is temporarily closed.
Later this year there will be a memorial service for Prince Friso.
The Stulpkerk was built in 1659. The community of this reformed church, which is part of the Protestant Church in the Netherlands, currently has 149 members. The church has been restored several times. That happened in 1843, 1938 and 1989. In 1843, among other minor renovations, the windows were replaced. In 1938 the whole interior was renovated. During the most recent restoration the roof had to be replaced because of a leak.
Breaking with the tradition
The funeral of Prince Friso in Lage Vuursche forms, according to expert Cees van Raak ‘a break with an ancient funeral tradition in the House of Orange-Nassau’.
Van Raak, connoisseur of the burial customs of the House of Orange-Nassau and author of two books on funerals of the Oranges, said the private funeral ceremony in Lage Vuursche comes to him as a surprise.
“Members of the House of Orange-Nassau have been embalmed for centuries and find their final resting place above ground, to indicate the eternal value of their royal descent,” said Van Raak. "Now for the first time an Orange will be buried in the soil."
Prime Minister Mark Rutte has decided that the flags on buildings of the central government, provinces and municipalities go half-mast on Friday, according to the RVD. In the so-called flag instruction, the Caribbean parts of the Netherlands are also asked to put the flag on half-mast, as well as all the diplomatic posts abroad.
Beatrix wants Friso nearby
The cemetery is right next to Drakensteyn castle where Beatrix is going to live.
Funerary expert Cees van Raak suspects that the upcoming move of Princess Beatrix to DrakensteynCastle has to do with the chosen cemetery. "Moreover, the sons of Claus and Beatrix had a carefree childhood there," he says.
"His mother wants to have him close to her, that’s the best explanation," said van Raak in RTL Boulevard.