Prince Rainier III of Monaco has died

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April 6, 2005

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His Serene Highness Prince Rainier III (Rainier Louis Henri Maxence Bertrand Grimaldi) of the Principality of Monaco has died. Prince Rainier has been prince of the tiny Mediterranean country for almost 56 years. He was 81 years old.

He died at 0635 local time (0435 UTC) at the Centre Cardio-Thoracique de Monaco with his son Prince Albert by his bedside. He had been hospitalized since March 8, 2005 and his health declined steadily since then. He had been suffering from heart, kidney and lung problems.

Prince Rainier is famed for being the husband of the late Princess Grace (Grace Kelly), and for investing in business at a famous gambling centre. He was on the throne since 1949, making him one of the longest reigning monarchs in Europe.

Prince Rainier is succeeded by Prince Albert II, who has already been serving as regent since March 31.

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