Remembering Lee Kuan Yew

Singaporeans in Washington honour Mr Lee Kuan Yew's legacy

AROUND 50 Singaporeans gathered for a simple memorial ceremony to honour Mr Lee Kuan Yew in Washington.

Dressed in black and white, they paid tribute to the founding Prime Minister and watched a video of Mr Lee on Saturday. Singapore ambassador to the US Ashok Mirpuri attended the event and told the audience that Singapore could be proud of the legacy Mr Lee had left.

The outpouring of tributes from American leaders this week, said the envoy, was a testament to Mr Lee's achievements.

"Everything that we do will carry on that legacy. Some things we will do differently, many things we will do like him. You look around, he has laid the foundation for us, but really making sure that everyone understands what we are, where we may be different from them," said the ambassador.

A string of American leaders has signed condolence books that were open at the Singapore embassy in Washington and US Congress, including Vice-President Joe Biden, Deputy Secretary of State Tony Blinken and former Secretary of State Colin Powell.

Scores of Singaporeans also dropped in to the embassy right up till Saturday to pay their respects, some driving hours from neighbouring states.

One of the organisers of the memorial event, George Washington University student Sharmishta Sivaramakrishnan, 20, said it provided a "great outlet for many people to express their condolences and general sentiments".

jeremyau@sph.com.sg