Remembering Lee Kuan Yew

Residents in heartland make plans to commemorate Mr Lee Kuan Yew

SINGAPORE - They may not live in areas where Mr Lee Kuan Yew's state funeral procession is scheduled to pass through, but members of the public in the heartland are commemorating the day's event in their own way.

The Lee family, who live in Toa Payoh, are dressed in black as a "mark of respect" to Singapore's first prime minister.

Said Mrs Nancy Lee, who is in her 40s: "We're going home now to watch the procession on television. The city is too crowded."

In nearby Bishan, others are tied up with work and unable to watch the state funeral on television. Said Madam Chang Ai Hua, 62: "At least I had the chance to pay last respect to Mr Lee at the community tribute centre in Tanjong Pagar."

Others still intend to make their way down to see the late Mr Lee off on his final journey on Sunday afternoon.

Mr Andrew Teo and his family of four, for instance, were at the community tribute centre in Ang Mo Kio in the morning to pay their last respects, before heading to Buona Vista to catch a glimpse of the procession.

His son, 11-year-old Luke, is bringing a camera "to take photos" and "to remember Mr Lee Kuan Yew". His mother, 51-year-old Winnie Chung, said that the late Mr Lee is her hero and that the family will miss him very dearly.

Former residents of Mr Lee's Tanjong Pagar constituency have also made their way back to the area where they used to live, travelling from as far as Choa Chu Kang and Serangoon.

Those who will not be going down to the route procession say they will not miss the telecast of the state funeral.

Ms Dionne Lim, in her 30s, brought her seven-year-old daughter Celest for swimming lesson in the morning at Ang Mo Kio Avenue 1. She said: "We'll definitely watch the procession later on television. This happens once in a lifetime."