ATHENS, Greece — Constantine, the previous and final king of Greece, who won an Olympic gold medal prior to becoming entangled in his country’s risky politics in the 1960s as king and spent decades in exile, has died. He was 82.
Medical practitioners at the non-public Hygeia Clinic in Athens verified to The Connected Press that Constantine died late Tuesday soon after cure in an intense care unit but had no more details pending an official announcement.
When he acceded to the throne as Constantine II 1964 at the age of 23, the youthful monarch, who had presently accomplished glory as an Olympic gold medalist in sailing, was hugely popular. By the adhering to year he experienced squandered a lot of that help with his active involvement in the machinations that introduced down the elected Center Union federal government of primary minister George Papandreou.
The episode involving the defection from the ruling party of many lawmakers, however greatly recognized in Greece as the “apostasy,” destabilized the constitutional buy and led to a armed forces coup in 1967. Constantine at some point clashed with the armed service rulers and was pressured into exile.
The dictatorship abolished the monarchy in 1973, whilst a referendum right after democracy was restored in 1974 dashed any hopes that Constantine experienced of at any time reigning all over again.
Reduced in the next a long time to only fleeting visits to Greece that raised a political and media storm every time, he was able to settle again in his household nation in his waning many years when opposing his existence no more time held currency as a badge of vigilant republicanism. With nominal nostalgia for the monarchy in Greece, Constantine grew to become a relatively uncontroversial figure.
Constantine was born June 2, 1940 in Athens, to Prince Paul, more youthful brother to King George II and heir presumptive to the throne, and princess Frederica of Hanover. His more mature sister Sophia is the spouse of previous King Juan Carlos I of Spain. The Greek-born Prince Philip, the late Duke of Edinburgh and partner of the late Queen Elizabeth II, was an uncle.
Constantine was educated at a boarding school and then attended a few army academies as well as Athens Regulation Faculty classes as preparation for his upcoming job. He also competed in many sporting activities, together with sailing and karate, in which he held a black belt.
In 1960, aged 20, he and two other Greek sailors won a gold medal in the Dragon Class — now no more time an Olympic course — at the Rome Olympics. Although continue to a prince, Constantine was elected a member of the International Olympic Committee and grew to become an honorary member for daily life in 1974.
For every Olympedia.org, Constantine “finished only 10th in the very first race, but then finished no even worse than fourth in any of the last six races to win the gold medal by around 1,000 points over the Argentine crew aboard Tango. [Constantine] obtained the conventional dunking in honor of his victory, as he was pushed into the drinking water by his mother, Queen Frederika.”
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