It has just been announced that King Michael of Romania has died in Switzerland, aged 96. The only child of then Crown Prince Carol of Romania and Princess Helen of Greece, he was born the grandson of the Kings of Romania and Greece. In 1925, his father eloped with his mistress and renounced his rights to the throne, allowing King Michael to succeed his grandfather to the Throne in 1927, though he was deposed when his father returned in 1930. In 1941, after a coup d’état, he was reinstalled as King of Romania, notably leading a coup d’état against the pro-Nazi Germany government, thought to have shortened WWII by six months, though he was forced to appoint a pro-soviet government. In 1947, he was forced to abdicate by the government and had to flee into exile. Months later, he married Princess Anne of Bourbon-Parma at the Royal Palace of Athens, the home of his uncle, King Paul of Greece. The couple had five daughters and lived in Italy, the UK, and Switzerland. In 1990, the former King was finally allowed back into his country, and a few years later, his properties were restored to the family. King Michael resided in Switzerland due to his ill health, while his daughter, Crown Princess Margretha, has a semi-official role in Romania. She now succeeds the King as the Head of the Royal House!
My condolences to the Romanian Royal family on this tragic loss!
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