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Gallery: Thai elite turn out for Leicester City owner's elaborate funeral

 

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A security officer moves a barrier outside a Buddhist temple ahead of the funeral rituals of Vichai Srivaddanaprabha in Bangkok, Thailand, Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018. An elaborate funeral began Saturday for Thai billionaire and Leicester City owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, who died last week when his helicopter crashed in a parking lot next to the English Premier League club's stadium. (AP Photo/Gemunu Amarasinghe)

A security officer moves a barrier outside a Buddhist temple ahead of the funeral rituals of Vichai Srivaddanaprabha in Bangkok, Thailand, Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018. An elaborate funeral began Saturday for Thai billionaire and Leicester City owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, who died last week when his helicopter crashed in a parking lot next to the English Premier League club's stadium. (AP Photo/Gemunu Amarasinghe)

In this photo issued by King Power, the royal urn with the remains of Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha is displayed at a Buddhist temple next to his portrait during his funeral in Bangkok, Thailand, Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018. An elaborate funeral began Saturday for Thai billionaire and Leicester City owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, who died last week when his helicopter crashed in a parking lot next to the English Premier League club's stadium. (King Power via AP)

In this photo issued by King Power, the royal urn with the remains of Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha is displayed at a Buddhist temple next to his portrait during his funeral in Bangkok, Thailand, Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018. An elaborate funeral began Saturday for Thai billionaire and Leicester City owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, who died last week when his helicopter crashed in a parking lot next to the English Premier League club's stadium. (King Power via AP)

Friends and relatives of Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha arrive for his funeral at a Buddhist temple in Bangkok, Thailand, Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018. An elaborate funeral began Saturday for Thai billionaire and Leicester City owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, who died last week when his helicopter crashed in a parking lot next to the English Premier League club's stadium. (AP Photo/Gemunu Amarasinghe)

Friends and relatives of Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha arrive for his funeral at a Buddhist temple in Bangkok, Thailand, Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018. An elaborate funeral began Saturday for Thai billionaire and Leicester City owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, who died last week when his helicopter crashed in a parking lot next to the English Premier League club's stadium. (AP Photo/Gemunu Amarasinghe)

A vehicle carrying the body of of Leicester City owner Thai businessman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha arrives at Wat Thep Sirin Temple ahead of his funeral in Bangkok, Thailand November 2, 2018.  Picture taken November 2, 2018. REUTERS/Stringer   NO RESALES. NO ARCHIVE.

A vehicle carrying the body of of Leicester City owner Thai businessman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha arrives at Wat Thep Sirin Temple ahead of his funeral in Bangkok, Thailand November 2, 2018. Picture taken November 2, 2018. REUTERS/Stringer NO RESALES. NO ARCHIVE.

Deputy prime minister of Thailand, Gen. Prawit Wongsuwan, center, arrives for the funeral of Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha at a Buddhist temple in Bangkok, Thailand, Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018. An elaborate funeral began Saturday for Thai billionaire and Leicester City owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, who died last week when his helicopter crashed in a parking lot next to the English Premier League club's stadium. (AP Photo/Gemunu Amarasinghe)

Deputy prime minister of Thailand, Gen. Prawit Wongsuwan, center, arrives for the funeral of Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha at a Buddhist temple in Bangkok, Thailand, Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018. An elaborate funeral began Saturday for Thai billionaire and Leicester City owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, who died last week when his helicopter crashed in a parking lot next to the English Premier League club's stadium. (AP Photo/Gemunu Amarasinghe)

A woman carries a portrait of Nusara Suknamai, former Miss Thailand and member of the staff of Leicester City owner Thai businessman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, during her funeral, in Pathum Thani province outside Bangkok, Thailand November 3, 2018. REUTERS/Cory Wright

A woman carries a portrait of Nusara Suknamai, former Miss Thailand and member of the staff of Leicester City owner Thai businessman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, during her funeral, in Pathum Thani province outside Bangkok, Thailand November 3, 2018. REUTERS/Cory Wright

A portrait of Nusara Suknamai, former Miss Thailand and member of the staff of Leicester City owner Thai businessman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, is seen at a temple during her funeral, in Pathum Thani province outside Bangkok, Thailand November 3, 2018. REUTERS/Cory Wright

A portrait of Nusara Suknamai, former Miss Thailand and member of the staff of Leicester City owner Thai businessman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, is seen at a temple during her funeral, in Pathum Thani province outside Bangkok, Thailand November 3, 2018. REUTERS/Cory Wright

In this photo issued by King Power, deputy prime minister of Thailand, Gen. Prawit Wongsuwan, center, participates in the Buddhist funeral rituals of Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha in Bangkok, Thailand, Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018. An elaborate funeral began Saturday for Thai billionaire and Leicester City owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, who died last week when his helicopter crashed in a parking lot next to the English Premier League club's stadium. (King Power via AP)

In this photo issued by King Power, deputy prime minister of Thailand, Gen. Prawit Wongsuwan, center, participates in the Buddhist funeral rituals of Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha in Bangkok, Thailand, Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018. An elaborate funeral began Saturday for Thai billionaire and Leicester City owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, who died last week when his helicopter crashed in a parking lot next to the English Premier League club's stadium. (King Power via AP)

A man carries a portrait of Nusara Suknamai, former Miss Thailand and member of the staff of Leicester City owner Thai businessman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, during her funeral, in Pathum Thani province outside Bangkok, Thailand November 3, 2018. REUTERS/Cory Wright

A man carries a portrait of Nusara Suknamai, former Miss Thailand and member of the staff of Leicester City owner Thai businessman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, during her funeral, in Pathum Thani province outside Bangkok, Thailand November 3, 2018. REUTERS/Cory Wright

Somrueng Suknamai, the mother of Nusara Suknamai, former Miss Thailand and member of the staff of Leicester City owner Thai businessman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, is comforted by relatives during her daughter's funeral, in Pathum Thani province outside Bangkok, Thailand November 3, 2018. REUTERS/Cory Wright

Somrueng Suknamai, the mother of Nusara Suknamai, former Miss Thailand and member of the staff of Leicester City owner Thai businessman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, is comforted by relatives during her daughter's funeral, in Pathum Thani province outside Bangkok, Thailand November 3, 2018. REUTERS/Cory Wright

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A security officer moves a barrier outside a Buddhist temple ahead of the funeral rituals of Vichai Srivaddanaprabha in Bangkok, Thailand, Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018. An elaborate funeral began Saturday for Thai billionaire and Leicester City owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, who died last week when his helicopter crashed in a parking lot next to the English Premier League club's stadium. (AP Photo/Gemunu Amarasinghe)

An elaborate funeral has begun for Thai billionaire and Leicester City owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, who died last week when his helicopter crashed in a car park next to the English Premier League club's stadium.

 

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In this photo issued by King Power, the royal urn with the remains of Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha is displayed at a Buddhist temple next to his portrait during his funeral in Bangkok, Thailand, Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018. An elaborate funeral began Saturday for Thai billionaire and Leicester City owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, who died last week when his helicopter crashed in a parking lot next to the English Premier League club's stadium. (King Power via AP)

In this photo issued by King Power, the royal urn with the remains of Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha is displayed at a Buddhist temple next to his portrait during his funeral in Bangkok, Thailand, Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018. An elaborate funeral began Saturday for Thai billionaire and Leicester City owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, who died last week when his helicopter crashed in a parking lot next to the English Premier League club's stadium. (King Power via AP)

A security officer moves a barrier outside a Buddhist temple ahead of the funeral rituals of Vichai Srivaddanaprabha in Bangkok, Thailand, Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018. An elaborate funeral began Saturday for Thai billionaire and Leicester City owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, who died last week when his helicopter crashed in a parking lot next to the English Premier League club's stadium. (AP Photo/Gemunu Amarasinghe)

A security officer moves a barrier outside a Buddhist temple ahead of the funeral rituals of Vichai Srivaddanaprabha in Bangkok, Thailand, Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018. An elaborate funeral began Saturday for Thai billionaire and Leicester City owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, who died last week when his helicopter crashed in a parking lot next to the English Premier League club's stadium. (AP Photo/Gemunu Amarasinghe)

Aiyawatt Srivaddhanaprabha and Aimon Srivaddhanaprabha, son and wife of Leicester City's owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha are pictured during his funeral at Wat Thepsirin in Bangkok, Thailand, November 3, 2018.

Aiyawatt Srivaddhanaprabha and Aimon Srivaddhanaprabha, son and wife of Leicester City's owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha are pictured during his funeral at Wat Thepsirin in Bangkok, Thailand, November 3, 2018.

A vehicle carrying the body of of Leicester City owner Thai businessman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha arrives at Wat Thep Sirin Temple ahead of his funeral in Bangkok, Thailand November 2, 2018.  Picture taken November 2, 2018. REUTERS/Stringer   NO RESALES. NO ARCHIVE.

A vehicle carrying the body of of Leicester City owner Thai businessman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha arrives at Wat Thep Sirin Temple ahead of his funeral in Bangkok, Thailand November 2, 2018. Picture taken November 2, 2018. REUTERS/Stringer NO RESALES. NO ARCHIVE.

A woman carries a portrait of Nusara Suknamai, former Miss Thailand and member of the staff of Leicester City owner Thai businessman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, during her funeral, in Pathum Thani province outside Bangkok, Thailand November 3, 2018. REUTERS/Cory Wright

A woman carries a portrait of Nusara Suknamai, former Miss Thailand and member of the staff of Leicester City owner Thai businessman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, during her funeral, in Pathum Thani province outside Bangkok, Thailand November 3, 2018. REUTERS/Cory Wright

In this photo issued by King Power, deputy prime minister of Thailand, Gen. Prawit Wongsuwan, center, participates in the Buddhist funeral rituals of Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha in Bangkok, Thailand, Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018. An elaborate funeral began Saturday for Thai billionaire and Leicester City owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, who died last week when his helicopter crashed in a parking lot next to the English Premier League club's stadium. (King Power via AP)

In this photo issued by King Power, deputy prime minister of Thailand, Gen. Prawit Wongsuwan, center, participates in the Buddhist funeral rituals of Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha in Bangkok, Thailand, Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018. An elaborate funeral began Saturday for Thai billionaire and Leicester City owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, who died last week when his helicopter crashed in a parking lot next to the English Premier League club's stadium. (King Power via AP)

 Soccer Football - Leicester City mourn and honour the victims of the helicopter crash - King Power Stadium, Leicester, Britain - October 31, 2018   Leicester City's Marc Albrighton views tributes after the club's owner Thai businessman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, and four other people died when their helicopter crashed as it left the ground after the match on Saturday   Action Images via Reuters/Peter Cziborra/File Photo

Soccer Football - Leicester City mourn and honour the victims of the helicopter crash - King Power Stadium, Leicester, Britain - October 31, 2018 Leicester City's Marc Albrighton views tributes after the club's owner Thai businessman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, and four other people died when their helicopter crashed as it left the ground after the match on Saturday Action Images via Reuters/Peter Cziborra/File Photo

A portrait of Nusara Suknamai, former Miss Thailand and member of the staff of Leicester City owner Thai businessman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, is seen at a temple during her funeral, in Pathum Thani province outside Bangkok, Thailand November 3, 2018. REUTERS/Cory Wright

A portrait of Nusara Suknamai, former Miss Thailand and member of the staff of Leicester City owner Thai businessman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, is seen at a temple during her funeral, in Pathum Thani province outside Bangkok, Thailand November 3, 2018. REUTERS/Cory Wright

Friends and relatives of Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha arrive for his funeral at a Buddhist temple in Bangkok, Thailand, Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018. An elaborate funeral began Saturday for Thai billionaire and Leicester City owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, who died last week when his helicopter crashed in a parking lot next to the English Premier League club's stadium. (AP Photo/Gemunu Amarasinghe)

Friends and relatives of Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha arrive for his funeral at a Buddhist temple in Bangkok, Thailand, Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018. An elaborate funeral began Saturday for Thai billionaire and Leicester City owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, who died last week when his helicopter crashed in a parking lot next to the English Premier League club's stadium. (AP Photo/Gemunu Amarasinghe)

Somrueng Suknamai, the mother of Nusara Suknamai, former Miss Thailand and member of the staff of Leicester City owner Thai businessman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, is comforted by relatives during her daughter's funeral, in Pathum Thani province outside Bangkok, Thailand November 3, 2018. REUTERS/Cory Wright

Somrueng Suknamai, the mother of Nusara Suknamai, former Miss Thailand and member of the staff of Leicester City owner Thai businessman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, is comforted by relatives during her daughter's funeral, in Pathum Thani province outside Bangkok, Thailand November 3, 2018. REUTERS/Cory Wright

A man carries a portrait of Nusara Suknamai, former Miss Thailand and member of the staff of Leicester City owner Thai businessman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, during her funeral, in Pathum Thani province outside Bangkok, Thailand November 3, 2018. REUTERS/Cory Wright

A man carries a portrait of Nusara Suknamai, former Miss Thailand and member of the staff of Leicester City owner Thai businessman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, during her funeral, in Pathum Thani province outside Bangkok, Thailand November 3, 2018. REUTERS/Cory Wright

Deputy prime minister of Thailand, Gen. Prawit Wongsuwan, center, arrives for the funeral of Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha at a Buddhist temple in Bangkok, Thailand, Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018. An elaborate funeral began Saturday for Thai billionaire and Leicester City owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, who died last week when his helicopter crashed in a parking lot next to the English Premier League club's stadium. (AP Photo/Gemunu Amarasinghe)

Deputy prime minister of Thailand, Gen. Prawit Wongsuwan, center, arrives for the funeral of Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha at a Buddhist temple in Bangkok, Thailand, Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018. An elaborate funeral began Saturday for Thai billionaire and Leicester City owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, who died last week when his helicopter crashed in a parking lot next to the English Premier League club's stadium. (AP Photo/Gemunu Amarasinghe)

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In this photo issued by King Power, the royal urn with the remains of Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha is displayed at a Buddhist temple next to his portrait during his funeral in Bangkok, Thailand, Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018. An elaborate funeral began Saturday for Thai billionaire and Leicester City owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, who died last week when his helicopter crashed in a parking lot next to the English Premier League club's stadium. (King Power via AP)

The royally sponsored funeral was being held at a temple in Bangkok and guests included top government officials, businessmen and other public figures.

The first ceremony began on Saturday, with other ceremonies scheduled until November 9.

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Aiyawatt Srivaddhanaprabha and Aimon Srivaddhanaprabha, son and wife of Leicester City's owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha are pictured during his funeral at Wat Thepsirin in Bangkok, Thailand, November 3, 2018.

Aiyawatt Srivaddhanaprabha and Aimon Srivaddhanaprabha, son and wife of Leicester City's owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha are pictured during his funeral at Wat Thepsirin in Bangkok, Thailand, November 3, 2018.

Aiyawatt Srivaddhanaprabha and Aimon Srivaddhanaprabha, son and wife of Leicester City's owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha are pictured during his funeral at Wat Thepsirin in Bangkok, Thailand, November 3, 2018.

"It's a very difficult time for his family and I'm here to show support," said Kiattisak Senamuang, a former Thai national soccer team coach and player who noted that Vichai was always supportive of soccer projects in Thailand. "May Vichai rest in peace."

The grounds of Wat Thepsirin were heavily guarded by scores of security officers.

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Deputy prime minister of Thailand, Gen. Prawit Wongsuwan, center, arrives for the funeral of Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha at a Buddhist temple in Bangkok, Thailand, Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018. An elaborate funeral began Saturday for Thai billionaire and Leicester City owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, who died last week when his helicopter crashed in a parking lot next to the English Premier League club's stadium. (AP Photo/Gemunu Amarasinghe)

Deputy prime minister of Thailand, Gen. Prawit Wongsuwan, center, arrives for the funeral of Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha at a Buddhist temple in Bangkok, Thailand, Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018. An elaborate funeral began Saturday for Thai billionaire and Leicester City owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, who died last week when his helicopter crashed in a parking lot next to the English Premier League club's stadium. (AP Photo/Gemunu Amarasinghe)

Deputy prime minister of Thailand, Gen. Prawit Wongsuwan, center, arrives for the funeral of Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha at a Buddhist temple in Bangkok, Thailand, Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018. An elaborate funeral began Saturday for Thai billionaire and Leicester City owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, who died last week when his helicopter crashed in a parking lot next to the English Premier League club's stadium. (AP Photo/Gemunu Amarasinghe)

White sheets were lowered to stop outsiders and media viewing the proceedings. However, the chanting of monks, amplified by loud speakers, could be heard resonating around the temple's grounds.

Leicester City's players plan to travel to Bangkok to attend Vichai's funeral after their match with Cardiff City on Saturday.

The crash in which Vichai was killed happened about an hour after the club's match against West Ham on October 27.

The Thai billionaire oversaw one of the greatest underdog successes in sport when his 5,000-1 outsiders won the English Premier League title in 2016.

In an era of often-absentee foreign owners in the Premier League, Vichai also broke the mould by forging close ties with supporters and the local community.

The business world remembers Vichai as the retail entrepreneur who grew Thailand's massive King Power duty-free chain.

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A vehicle carrying the body of of Leicester City owner Thai businessman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha arrives at Wat Thep Sirin Temple ahead of his funeral in Bangkok, Thailand November 2, 2018.  Picture taken November 2, 2018. REUTERS/Stringer   NO RESALES. NO ARCHIVE.

A vehicle carrying the body of of Leicester City owner Thai businessman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha arrives at Wat Thep Sirin Temple ahead of his funeral in Bangkok, Thailand November 2, 2018. Picture taken November 2, 2018. REUTERS/Stringer NO RESALES. NO ARCHIVE.

A vehicle carrying the body of of Leicester City owner Thai businessman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha arrives at Wat Thep Sirin Temple ahead of his funeral in Bangkok, Thailand November 2, 2018. Picture taken November 2, 2018. REUTERS/Stringer NO RESALES. NO ARCHIVE.

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Today, the King Power empire is worth £3.8 billion (4.88 billion US dollars), according to Forbes, with Vichai having been the fifth-richest person in Thailand.

A devout Buddhist who had monks bless his team's King Power Stadium regularly for good luck, Vichai and his wife, Aimon Srivaddhanaprabha, had four children.

He was born Vichai Raksriaksorn, but in 2012, the king of Thailand recognised his achievements by bestowing on his family their new surname, which means "light of progressive glory".

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 Soccer Football - Leicester City mourn and honour the victims of the helicopter crash - King Power Stadium, Leicester, Britain - October 31, 2018   Leicester City's Marc Albrighton views tributes after the club's owner Thai businessman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, and four other people died when their helicopter crashed as it left the ground after the match on Saturday   Action Images via Reuters/Peter Cziborra/File Photo

Soccer Football - Leicester City mourn and honour the victims of the helicopter crash - King Power Stadium, Leicester, Britain - October 31, 2018 Leicester City's Marc Albrighton views tributes after the club's owner Thai businessman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, and four other people died when their helicopter crashed as it left the ground after the match on Saturday Action Images via Reuters/Peter Cziborra/File Photo

Soccer Football - Leicester City mourn and honour the victims of the helicopter crash - King Power Stadium, Leicester, Britain - October 31, 2018 Leicester City's Marc Albrighton views tributes after the club's owner Thai businessman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, and four other people died when their helicopter crashed as it left the ground after the match on Saturday Action Images via Reuters/Peter Cziborra/File Photo

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