BUCHAREST, Romania – A coffin carrying the body of the late Romanian King Michael I has arrived at Bucharest's airport from Switzerland ahead of his funeral this weekend.
The former king, who ruled Romania twice and was forced to abdicate by the communists in 1947, died on Dec. 5 in Switzerland at age 96.
Michael's five daughters and his estranged grandson Nicholas Medforth-Mills, who was stripped of his title in 2015, took part in the ceremony Wednesday at the airport. Television stations broadcast the events live.
Michael, who played a pivotal role in Romania's switch to the Allied cause following a coup in 1944, spent decades in exile working as a chicken farmer and aircraft pilot. He finally got his citizenship back in 1997, eight years after the collapse of communism.