21-gun salute shell casings from Lee Kuan Yew's funeral given to groups, individuals

Artillery shell casings from the gun salute at Mr Lee Kuan Yew's funeral were given to 21 individuals and organisations.
Artillery shell casings from the gun salute at Mr Lee Kuan Yew's funeral were given to 21 individuals and organisations.PHOTOS: MINISTRY OF COMMUNICATIONS AND INFORMATION
The shell casings from the 21-gun salute will be given to individuals and organisations closely associated with the late Mr Lee Kuan Yew.
The shell casings from the 21-gun salute will be given to individuals and organisations closely associated with the late Mr Lee Kuan Yew. PHOTO: MCI
PA's deputy chairman Chan Chun Sing (right) and chief executive director Ang Hak Seng receiving the artillery shell casing.
PA's deputy chairman Chan Chun Sing (right) and chief executive director Ang Hak Seng receiving the artillery shell casing. ST PHOTO: ALPHONSUS CHERN
Left: The artillery shell casings from the 21-gun salute at Mr Lee's funeral on March 29 last year. Above: PA, one of the recipients, placed its gift near the entrance of its headquarters yesterday.
People's Association, one of the recipients, placed the artillery shell casing near the entrance of its headquarters.PHOTOS: MINISTRY OF COMMUNICATIONS AND INFORMATION, ALPHONSUS CHERN
Minister Chan Chun Sing penning down his SG100 wish on a pebble.
Minister Chan Chun Sing penning down his SG100 wish on a pebble. ST PHOTO: ALPHONSUS CHERN

The artillery shell casings from the 21-gun salute, fired during the state funeral of founding Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew last March, have been given to 21 organisations and individuals.

The gift is to express "my deep thanks to all of them for the roles they played in my father's life and for their contributions to the nation", said Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong in a Facebook post yesterday.

Those given the casings include national agencies such as the Singapore Armed Forces and People's Association (PA) as well as individuals who delivered eulogies at the funeral service, like Old Guard leader and former education minister Ong Pang Boon.

Mr Lee died on March 23 at age 91.


Gunners from the Singapore Artillery's 21st Battalion executing the 21-gun salute at the Padang. PHOTO: MINDEF 

The week-long national mourning and state funeral "were an intense and emotional experience for us all", PM Lee said.

  • Where you can view the shells
  • National Museum

    The artillery shell casing, which Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong donated to the National Heritage Board, will be on display at the We Built A Nation exhibition, which runs from March 23 to Oct 2.

    Housing Board Gallery

    The gift is on display at the HDB Gallery, which is at basement 1 of the HDB Hub in Toa Payoh.

    Botanic Gardens

    The shell casing, given to the National Parks Board, will be on display at the Singapore Botanic Gardens Heritage Museum from today.

    Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau

    The casing will be on show at an exhibition called Declassified - Corruption Matters, which will be held from April 7 to May 22 at The Plaza@ National Library.

    PM Lee will open the exhibition, which charts Singapore's anti-corruption journey.

 

To honour him, a 21-gun salute was fired from four Howitzer guns at the Padang - the site of many historic events - by gunners from the 21st Battalion, Singapore Artillery.

Said PM Lee: "I asked the SAF to collect the 21 artillery shell casings, to be presented to people, institutions and organisations that were closely linked to Mr Lee."

Yesterday, about 600 PA staff, grassroots leaders and volunteers gathered at its headquarters in King George's Avenue, to witness the memento being handed to PA's deputy chairman Chan Chun Sing and chief executive director Ang Hak Seng.

Both men then placed the shell casing on a shelf near the entrance of the headquarters.

Mr Chan, who is also the labour chief, said he hoped the memento will be a reminder to all grassroots leaders and volunteers of the PA's mission to continue to build a cohesive society, regardless of people's backgrounds and differences.

He urged them to anticipate challenges, take care of residents, be bold and turn every constraint into an opportunity to ensure Singapore can be "even better than what we have been".

The shell casings can also be viewed by people at other places.

The Housing Board said its gift is on display at the HDB Gallery in the HDB Hub in Toa Payoh.

Its chief executive Cheong Koon Hean said Mr Lee was the key driver of public housing.

"His vision of a home-owning society has given Singaporeans a tangible stake in the nation. Without his vision, Singaporeans today would not have a home they can call their own, upon which they can build their family and lives."

The National Parks Board (NParks) will display its shell casing at the Singapore Botanic Gardens Heritage Museum from today.

NParks chief executive Kenneth Er said it was Mr Lee's vision to turn Singapore into a Garden City.

"We will strive to continue his legacy and sustain his vision, working with the community to transform Singapore into a City in a Garden," he said.

Among the individual recipients, some donated the casings to public and community organisations.

They include PM Lee, who gave his to the National Heritage Board, and Emeritus Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong, who gave his to Marine Parade community club.

Tanjong Pagar community leader Mr Leong Chun Loong, 80, who had served at the constituency since 1976, gave his gift to its community centre. "What we have achieved is not due to just my efforts. The gift is to recognise all my fellow grassroots volunteers who have contributed.

"Also, I'd rather display it in a public place so more people can see it."

Read Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong's appreciation letter to the PA below: 

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 18, 2016, with the headline '21-gun salute shell casings given to groups, individuals'. Print Edition | Subscribe