Sampo Terho (Blue Reform), the minister for European Affairs, Culture and Sport, confirmed yesterday evening on Twitter that the relatives of the former ski jumper Matti Nykänen want to arrange Nykänen’s funeral in a private, family setting.
To respect the family’s wishes, Terho will cancel his plans for a state funeral.
In general, state funerals are arranged to former presidents but the government has sometimes been known to grant exceptions to authors, academics, generals and prime ministers, and, yes, sometimes to sportsmen.
According to Terho, Nykänen’s achievements in ski jumping will be honored in other ways.
“I wish the relatives strength for grieving,” he said.
Nykänen passed away at the beginning of the week, on the night between Sunday and Monday.
He is considered the greatest ski jumper of our time.