Luxembourg’s Grand Duke Jean, a respected figure known as the “quiet monarch,’’ passed away on Tuesday at 98, his family announced.
His son and successor Grand Duke Henri said Jean died “in peace and surrounded by the love of his family.’’
“I had great esteem for this man of commitment, kindness and courage who, throughout his reign, and in all circumstances, gave the best of himself to his country.
“His passing away is a great loss for the grand duchy and for Europe’’ European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, a fellow Luxembourger, said.
Luxembourg’s royal family was exiled during the German occupation in World War II.
As heir apparent, Jean joined the Irish Guards in the British armed forces in 1942 and took part in the 1944 Normandy landings.
He was enthusiastically greeted by his people when Allied troops liberated the city of Luxembourg in September 1944.
Jean, from 1964 to 2000, served as head of state of Luxembourg, the only grand duchy in the world.
He was widely respected for his discreet manner and absence of scandals.
“He was a role model for all of us, through his commitment, he has left a mark that will last forever,’’ Prime Minister Xavier Bettel said on Twitter.
The state funeral will be held in May, in Luxembourg’s cathedral.