Memorial Service for HM King Peter II of Yugoslavia on the 43rd Anniversary of his Death November 3, 2013
On behalf of His Royal Highness Crown Prince Alexander II, Mr. Dragomir Acovic, chairman of the Crown Council, and Prof. Dr. Nicholas Moravcevich, member of the Crown Council, laid a wreath today at the tomb of HM King Peter II of Yugoslavia at the Royal Mausoleum in St. George Church in Oplenac. His Grace Bishop Jovan of Sumadija, with clergy, officiated a Holy Liturgy and a Requiem, and after the service wreaths were laid on the King’s tomb in the presence of representatives of the Municipality of Topola, the Army of Serbia, King Peter I Foundation, and numerous citizens who came to pay their respects to the late King.
King Peter II of Yugoslavia was the firstborn son of King Alexander I and Queen Maria of Yugoslavia. King Peter II was born in Belgrade 6 September 1923. His Godparents were King George VI and Queen Elizabeth (later Queen Mother of Great Britain). His education commenced at The Royal Palace after which he went to the Sandroyd School in England, which he left after his father’s assassination in 1934. Since King Peter II was 11 years old and underage at the time of his father’s assassination, a regency was formed consisting of three regents including his great uncle Prince Paul Karadjordjevic. After the beginning of World War II in April 1941, King Peter II was forced to leave the country along with the Yugoslav Government – initially to Greece, then to Palestine and then to Egypt. King Peter II joined other monarchs and leaders of German occupied Europe in London in June 1941. There King Peter was regarded by the people of Yugoslavia as the symbol of resistance against Nazism. King Peter II completed his education at Cambridge University and joined the Royal Air Force.
The new communist authorities in the Homeland revoked his citizenship and confiscated all properties of the Royal Family in 1947. Initially King Peter II lived in exile in London with his wife (he married Princess Alexandra of Greece and Denmark in 1944, the daughter of King Alexander of the Hellenes and Aspasia Manos) and his son Crown Prince Alexander was born in 1945. King Peter II spent the last years of his life in America. After a long and grave illness, King Peter II died 3 November 1970 in a hospital in Denver, Colorado, and he was buried in St. Sava Monastery in Libertyville, Illinois. He was the only king buried in the United States. The King’s remains were transferred to the Royal Palace Chapel on 22 January 2013, and a State Funeral was held on 26 May 2013 at the Karadjordjevic dynasty Mausoleum of St. George in Oplenac, Serbia where His Majesty was buried together with his wife, Her Majesty Queen Alexandra, his mother Her Majesty Queen Maria and his brother His Royal Highness Prince Andrej.