Former head of White Rabbit killed by monkey's rock

Mr Weng Mao, 67, was a former chairman of the Guan Sheng Yuan Group, known for its iconic White Rabbit, or Da Bai Tu, milk sweets.
Mr Weng Mao, 67, was a former chairman of the Guan Sheng Yuan Group, known for its iconic White Rabbit, or Da Bai Tu, milk sweets.

HONG KONG • A former chairman of one of China's most iconic sweet brands died after being hit by a rock while touring a scenic spot in Henan last week. The rock is thought to have been kicked down by a monkey.

Mr Weng Mao, 67, who used to head the Guan Sheng Yuan Group, famous for its White Rabbit milk candy, was taken to a local hospital but died there later last Tuesday, the South China Morning Post reported.

Yuntai Mountain, where the incident occurred, is home to wild monkeys known to come down from the clifftops to snatch food and belongings from tourists.

Employees of the scenic site confirmed after inspection they had discovered that monkeys had kicked off the rocks, according to a police statement sent to Sina.com.cn.

The news went viral on social media in China because of Mr Weng's association with the White Rabbit brand, which has been popular since the 1960s. Mr Weng stepped down from the post of chairman in 2010.

A statement released to Chinese media last Friday by the Yuntai Mountain Management Bureau confirmed his bizarre death.

It read: "The tourist, Weng Mao, was hit in the head by a stone kicked down by a monkey near the pavilion when he was touring Tanpu Valley."

The statement added that staff had given Weng first-aid treatment before taking him to the People's Hospital in Xiuwu County.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 25, 2016, with the headline 'Former head of White Rabbit killed by monkey's rock'. Print Edition | Subscribe