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Prince Charles and Camilla lead mourners at Mark Shand's funeral

1 May 2014
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Prince Charles and his wife Camilla lead the mourners at Mark Shand's funeral on Thursday.

The Duchess was seen wiping tears from her eyes and holding tightly to Charles' hand for support as they joined the congregation at Holy Trinity Church in Stourpaine.

Camilla, who has been left 'devastated' by her brother's sudden death, came together with her family in the Dorset village as they laid 62-year-old travel writer and conservationist Mark to rest.

The Duchess of Cornwall

Among the crowd were Mark and Camilla's sister Annabel Elliot, her son and daughter Ben and Alice, and Camilla's children Tom Parker Bowles and Laura Lopes.

Mark Shand's daughter Ayesha remembers her dad with touching photo tribute

Standing out amid the mourners dressed in black was Mark's daughter Ayesha Shand. The 19-year-old sported a brightly-coloured dress, complete with a purple and orange skirt, and used a red tasselled headband to keep her blonde locks in place.

Mark and Camilla's sister Annabel Elliot with Ayesha Shand

Camilla's former husband Brigadier Andrew Henry Parker Bowles also attended the ceremony, as did Conservative MPs Nicholas Soames and Zac Goldsmith —  whose cousin Clio is Ayesha Shand's mother.

Mark Shand's nephew pays tribute to his 'hero'

A garland of flowers laid by Camilla bore a handwritten message on a card finished with her royal insignia. "Darling Mark," it read. "With happy memories and all my love."

Camilla was supported by her daughter Laura Lopes and Prince Charles

Pallbearers carried the biodegradable wicker coffin into the church which carries particular significance for the family.

Mark, Camilla and Annabel's father Major Bruce Shand was laid to rest at the same church in 2006.

The family spent many happy times in the Dorset village, where Annabel is based, and Mark once described it as the family's 'centre'.

Mark died after falling and hitting his head during a charity event in New York.

Tributes have poured in for the charismatic adventurer, including a touching comment from Camilla's son Tom.

In a piece for the Mail on Sunday, food writer Tom said his uncle's death has left "a massive, gaping hole that will never be filled".

"There was no-one like him, never will be," he added. "How lucky we all were to have had this giant, magnificent figure in our lives."

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