Buddhist funeral service begins in Bangkok for Leicester City billionaire owner Vichai

The funeral of Leicester City owner and Thai billionaire, Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, killed in his helicopter crashed in a parking lot outside the stadium a week ago was underway on Saturday in Thailand.

Vichai, 60, founder of Thai duty-free giant King Power International two members of his staff, his pilot and his partner all died in a horrific helicopter crash outside the King Power Stadium last Saturday,funeral, closed to the public and media, was attended by Vichai’s relatives, friends and senior Thai politicians and soccer officials.

The police released the names of the other four people who they believe also died in the helicopter crash: two members of Vichai’s staff, Nursara Suknamai and Kaveporn Punpare; the pilot, Eric Swaffer; and another passenger, Izabela Roza Lechowicz.

The funeral which has been granted ‘Royal sponsorship’ will last for several days and in recognition of his standing in the country, according to Buddhist tradition. The Royal accolade includes a Royal Bathing Rite for the body and a special eight-sided urn will hold his remains as an honor by King Maha Vajiralongkorn, and was followed by recitation ceremonies which will last for seven days..

The grounds of the temple, Wat Thepsirin, were guarded by scores of security officers. White sheets were lowered to block outsiders and the news media from viewing the proceedings.

Kiatisuk “Zico” Senamuang, a former Thai national soccer player and coach who was also at the Leicester match, told reporters that international soccer world had lost an important patron.

“I’m very proud of him… Not only the Thai people but also soccer fans around the world mourn his loss,” he said.

Leicester City striker Jamie Vardy and his team mates will travel to Thailand for the funeral after Saturday’s Premier League match against Cardiff City.

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