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Emotional Dutch and Belgian royals remember victims of Swiss bus tragedy

22 MARCH 2012

Head bowed, Princess Maxima of the Netherlands cuts a desolate figure as she remembers the children who perished in a coach crash in Switzerland.

The Argentina-born wife of Prince Willem-Alexander – who tried to comfort his inconsolable spouse – was among Belgian and Dutch royals who had gathered at a memorial service in the Belgian town of Lommel.

 

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Seventeen of the young victims were from the country, and six had Dutch nationality.

Their lives were cut short after their coach – which was returning home from a skiing holiday – crashed in a Swiss tunnel.

During the emotional service, Maxima's own personal tragedy was no doubt weighing heavily on her mind.

 

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Her brother-in-law, Prince Johan Friso, is fighting for his life after being buried under an avalanche while skiing off-piste in Austria.

Also remembering the victims was Belgian King Albert II and his wife, Queen Paola.

Both looked visibly shaken as they watched military guards bear rose-covered coffins of their young countrymen.

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