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Thursday, December 04, 2014

An Officer and a Gentleman - Terence Yeo

I first got to know Terence early this year when he joined a group of us trekked up to Gunung Nuang in Malaysia.

Terence in the middle of the group photo at the summit of Gunung Nuang
Back then, I only knew he was in a school and I thought he was a school teacher. It was only later that I found out he was in fact a vice-principal at a secondary school.  Why did I mentioned this? Because he was not your typical school principal. In my mind, school principals are mostly bookish and boorish and very serious. But Terence was not. He was fun, loud at times and very down to earth. During our trek, he constantly stayed behind to help the weaker climbers even though he was probably one of the fittest having completed many marathons and ultras.

From that trip, we got to know each other better and Terence strikes me as a most helpful and humble guy. He joins us on crazy escapades like the Prawn Mee Makanathon, made time to have dinner with us despite his busy schedules and join in our whatsapp chat; something that I certainly do not expect from somebody so senior in the hierarchy in the Civil service.
Terence at the Prawn Mee Makanathon
Terence at one of our dinner outing
Sadly, on 27 November 2014, at the young age of 40, he passed away leaving behind his wife May and 3 beautiful kids. It seems he suffered a massive brain haemorrhage after climbing Mount Kinabalu with his students. 

In the short time that I have known him, I could sense that he was a very special person - the type who will go out of his way to help friends and probably strangers as well and the type who will probably give his life for another person if he has to. And the testimony and tributes that has floored his facebook page demonstrated this wonderful traits clearly in the way that he has touched and helped and inspired so many people.

He will be sadly missed but never forgotten. RIP Terence. Your time here may be over but you will always be loved and remembered by your loved ones, friends and students.

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