Michael Schumacher: ‘Silent and in shock’ in village, French Riviera

Image copyright Pablo Ortega Image caption Passers-by walk past a makeshift memorial for Rosberg in a park near his childhood home Neighbours in the village of Taddle Creek Park, where former world champion turned…

Michael Schumacher: 'Silent and in shock' in village, French Riviera

Image copyright Pablo Ortega Image caption Passers-by walk past a makeshift memorial for Rosberg in a park near his childhood home

Neighbours in the village of Taddle Creek Park, where former world champion turned car CEO and co-driver Michael Schumacher grew up, are not helping to plan a funeral service for a car designer killed in a plane crash on the French Riviera.

Schumacher’s girlfriend Michelle Cagney and her mother, Corinna, are flying back to F1 racing in Belgium with him after flying home from her native Switzerland to bury the woman who had helped him design F1 cars.

Schumacher would have turned 55 last Sunday.

The family asked for their privacy to be respected as Michelle Cagney’s mother arrived home to prepare the funeral for Florence Rosberg, Michael Schumacher’s former girlfriend, who died last week aged 41.

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Many of the families who lived close to Schumacher in Fassburg, Germany at the time of his childhood, left their houses in the wake of the news on Friday.

Views were not so warm on the evening of Sunday 11 August when the news that Rosberg had died of injuries suffered in the crashed plane was announced.

A memorial service had been planned at the cemetery in Taddle Creek Park in Fassburg for 10 o’clock on Monday 14 August.

However, neighbours and family members of other people in the village had quietly organised something much more significant.

They opened a makeshift tribute at the entrance to Taddle Creek Park on Friday evening to mark her short life.

Image copyright Pierre Cantin/DPA Image caption Photo commemorating Rosberg’s life was taken out of frame by the congregation when she became unconscious in the crash

A spokeswoman for the administration in the village of which Schumacher’s family are part said: “Everyone in the village is very shocked by what has happened.

“The local police did not find out that an extraordinary service was being planned in Taddle Creek Park.”

Image copyright Manuel Zussman/DPA Image caption Rosberg’s family were heavily involved in celebrating the 40th birthday of daughter Lara on Sunday

The memorial service was going ahead at 10am on Tuesday 14 August at the same cemetery where Schumacher is buried.

Reruns of Rosberg’s life story were shown on BBC F1, and Chris Evans announced on the BBC1 show his intention to pay tribute to Rosberg on behalf of the programme at 10.45am on Tuesday.

The tone of reaction from many people in the village is very quiet. A house close to where Rosberg lived with her husband Thomas did not even answer the door on Monday.

Image copyright EPA Image caption Flowers, teddy bears and messages at the site of the plane crash in the French Riviera

Rosberg won the 2007 F1 world championship with Williams, and also spent years as a reserve driver for other teams. She had three children, Lara, Sebastian and Elias.

From next weekend, the family is expected to travel to the Circuit de la Sarthe for the first round of the European Grand Prix, where she will be remembered by Formula 1 fans and her family.

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