Queen Margrethe II of Denmark’s husband Prince Henrik, born Henri de Laborde de Monpezat, has passed away at age 83. The Danish Royal Court announced the sad news on Tuesday evening, February 13, with a statement that read (translated to English): “His Royal Highness Prince Henrik died on Tuesday, February 13, at 23.18 quietly at Fredensborg Palace,” adding, “The prince was surrounded by her Majesty Queen and the two sons.”
Margrethe, 77, and Henrik, who married in 1967, are parents to sons Crown Prince Frederik, 49, and Prince Joachim, 48. Earlier in the day, before his death, the Prince was transferred from Rigshospitalet to his home of Fredensborg Castle in Copenhagen, where the palace stated he would spend his final days. A royal statement about Henrik's condition read: "His Royal Highness Prince Henrik has today been transferred from Rigshospitalet to Fredensborg Castle, where the prince wishes to stay in his last time. The condition of the prince remains serious."
It was revealed last Friday, February 9, that the Prince’s health condition had “greatly worsened” after doctors found a benign tumor in the royal's lung. As a result, Crown Prince Frederik cut his trip to the Winter Olympics short and rushed home to his father's side.
Her Majesty’s husband has been in and out of hospital over the past year. Last September, it was revealed that Henrik suffered from dementia. A palace statement read: "It is with deep regret that Her Majesty the Queen has asked the Lord Chamberlain to announce: following a longer course of investigation, and most recently, a series of examinations conducted during late summer, a team of specialists at Rigshospitalet has now concluded that His Royal Highness Prince Henrik suffers from dementia.”
The statement continued, "The diagnosis implies a decline in the prince's cognitive functional level. The extent of the cognitive failure is… greater than expected considering the age of the prince, and can be accompanied by changes in behavior, reaction patterns, judgement and emotional life and may therefore also affect the interaction with the outside world."
The Queen's husband retired from royal duties in 2016, while renouncing his title of Prince Consort. Aside from his two sons, the Prince leaves behind daughter-in-laws Crown Princess Mary and Princess Marie, in addition to eight grandchildren — Prince Christian, Princess Isabella, Prince Vincent, Princess Josephine, Prince Nikolai, Prince Felix, Prince Henrik and Princess Athena.
Last year, Henrik opened up about not wanting to be buried next to his wife in Denmark’s Roskilde Cathedral. “My wife has decided that she would like to be Queen, and I’m very pleased with that,” he said in an interview with Danish magazine Se og Hør. “But as a person, she must know that if a man and a woman are married, then they are equal.” “It’s my wife and not me that can do anything about this matter. If she wants me buried with her, she has to make me King Consort,” Henrik added. “End of story – I couldn’t care less.”