Just a couple days ago, the Singapore Government and many fellow citizens remembered our Founding Prime Minister Mr Lee Kuan Yew, of whom has passed away at Singapore General Hospital (SGH) on 23 March 2015, at 3.18am.
With deep sadness, his son, of whom is also the current Prime Minister Mr Lee Hsien Loong announced his father’s passing away via mass media later that morning. The news of his death has rocked the nation and many other countries worldwide.
Mr Lee’s health was deteriorating, however many Singaporeans had hoped that he would be able to recover and join in the upcoming SG50 National Day celebrations in August. Heard that he last stepped into his office in April 2015 before hospitalisation.
I believe some Singaporeans were bracing themselves for his impending death. I was one of them. However I didn’t expect the news to come suddenly that Monday morning.
On this day 25 March, exactly a year ago, there was a procession of the gun carriage bearing Mr Lee’s body along a 2 kilometre long route from the Istana, through the Civic District, to the Parliament House where his body was laid in state – for Singaporeans, and for foreign friends, far and near, to come paying their last respects to him, round the clock. 24 hours. For 5 days. His State Funeral took place on Sunday 29 March 2015.
As you can see, a Singapore state flag was drapped around his coffin as a gesture of highest respect and honour for this great man.
Thousands of Singaporeans including myself went to queue, just to pay respects to him. It was a historic moment because many people including the elderly were very much willing to go the extra mile, bracing the hot sun to queue. This is where the Singapore Spirit came alive – strangers stepped forward to do something for their fellow citizens, offering free drinking water, fans, umbrellas, mini seats to people who were queuing. Taking initiative to do something.
Mr Lee Kuan Yew and other founding fathers made the Singapore Story a legend. He unified all Singaporeans as one, even in his death.
On Wednesday evening, I went to one of the remembrance events held at the steps of the National Arts Gallery (former Supreme Court building). It was held from 6.30pm till 8.30pm.
Penned my thoughts on the electric candles provided. And worn the red/white ribbon given, onto my tee shirt.
If you ask me for one Singapore national day song to play at Padang for us Singaporeans to remember Mr Lee Kuan Yew, I personally think the 1986 song “Count on me Singapore” is the best choice.
The song lyrics are appropriate and meaningful, especially on this 1-year death anniversary day. Talking about rallying Singaporeans together to keep Singapore going till and beyond SG100. I believe this is the biggest concern or worry which Mr Lee Kuan Yew have had before he passed on.
We will continue to write the Singapore Story until the day the island state turns 100 years old in year 2065.