Pearly Gates (a tribute to Mr. Lee Kuan Yew 1923 – 2015)

The Pearly Gates

There was a tinge of sadness within me this morning when I got to know that Mr. Lee Kuan Yew,  the founder of modern Singapore, passed away early this morning at the age of 91. To be honest, it was not a surprise to me. From news updates over the pass few days about his extended hospital stay and deteriorating health condition (pnuemonia), I had the presentiment the bad news will come at any time. I even mentioned this to my family and explained to my daughters who Mr. Lee Kuan Yew was and his contributions to Singapore. Over the years, I have read some of his autobiographies to get to know the man better in his own words (the story on the love of his life and his political formative years makes compelling reading) and i do visit Singapore on a frequent basis to experience for myself what an extraordinary vision and foundation he had laid for Singapore from way back in 1965 and led it to be the Singapore it is today.

In Mr Lee Kuan Yew’s own words:
“You begin your journey not knowing where it will take you. You have plans, you have dreams, but every now and again you have to take uncharted roads, face impassable mountains, cross treacherous rivers, be blocked by landslides and earthquakes. That’s the way my life has been.

All great leaders share a common curse, they have their fair share of supporters and critics …

In Mr Lee Kuan Yew’s own words:
“The final verdict will not be in the obituaries. The final verdict will be when the PhD students dig out the archives, read my old papers, assess what my enemies have said, sift the evidence and seek the truth. I’m not saying that everything I did was right, but everything I did was for an honourable purpose.”

It would indeed had been an honour and privilege to have met him personally.

A piece of advice from an interview he gave 5 years ago I think serves us well to note …

“Have a purpose driven life and finish well, my friends.”

God bless and rest in peace, dear sir, you finished admirably.

Photo : Fujifilm X-E2 with XF 55-200 mm lens.


4 thoughts on “Pearly Gates (a tribute to Mr. Lee Kuan Yew 1923 – 2015)

  1. Lovely tribute, Ken. Love the way you captured the sky, and the tiny bird flying up to the light. The world is a big place and there are many of us with many different opinions. We can stand our ground and the least we can do is be humble about it and show compassion to those around us. Which is what Mr Lee Kuan Yew did in building the city that is Singapore today.

    Though I’m not Singaporean and have left Singapore many years ago, I too felt a tinge of sadness upon hearing the news of his passing. In many ways, Singapore is such a lucky country because of him and I look back on my time there with such fondness. RIP Mr Lee.

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