Driving instructor killed by fallen tree was supposed to meet fiancee for dinner

It was the last lesson of the day for driving instructor Jason Cheong, and he had dinner plans with his fiancee that evening.

But the 25-year-old never made it last Saturday. He died after a tree fell on his car during heavy rain.

His fiancee, Ms Brenda Lee, told The Straits Times yesterday at his wake that he had called her three times during his breaks. She even remembered exactly when he called her for the last time: 3.12pm. He asked if she had already had lunch.

"At 5.30pm, I messaged him that I was going to have a bath, and to call me when he was home, but he never did," she said.

Ms Lee later found out what had happened from his sister-in-law, who introduced the couple to each other five years ago.

Mr Cheong's elder brother, Mr Jacky Cheong, 31, said that his brother had been saving up for his wedding. The couple had also applied for a flat together.

Ms Lee kept her composure during the interview at Mr Cheong's wake on Woodlands Drive 71.

She hoped that drivers would think about their loved ones and drive safely. It was advice that Mr Cheong often gave.

His student Marliana Sumarno, 34, was driving at the time of the incident. She survived.

Mr Cheong's sister initially did not allow her to attend his wake on Sunday night, but eventually relented. Ms Lee said she had no ill feelings towards Ms Marliana.

"I hope she can let it go. I don't think she will take up driving after this, but if she does, I hope she remembers what he taught her."

A National Parks Board spokesman said late last night that its officials had visited the family.


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