Duke of Windsor’s Valet Dead at 69
PARIS (AP) _ Sydney Johnson, longtime personal valet to the Duke of Windsor, died Wednesday in Paris. He was 69.
Johnson, who spent more than 30 years in the service of the former King Edward VIII, made his last public appearance greeting guests Dec. 10 when the Windsors’ Paris mansion was reopened by Mohamed Al Fayed, the owner of the Ritz Hotel in Paris and Harrods department store in London.
″I feel on top of the world,″ Johnson was quoted as saying at the party, where he was dressed as of old in gold and red livery. ″The restoration is so authentic I expect to see the duchess stepping down the staircase asking, ’How do I look?‴
A Ritz Hotel official, speaking on condition of anonymity, confirmed Johnson’s death and said he had no information about its cause.
Al Fayed was quoted by the British domestic news agency Press Association as saying Johnson ″was truly a gentlemen’s gentleman. We shall miss him very much.″
Johnson was born in Nassau, The Bahamas, and entered the Windsors’ service when the duke was governor-general of the islands off Florida during World War II.
Funeral arrangements were incomplete.