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Excerpts of ex-president S R Nathan's letter of condolence

"Today, Singapore lost its most illustrious son and foremost Nationalist - Lee Kuan Yew - leaving us to mourn his loss. He was an extraordinary man in our midst. He leaves behind a legacy of accomplishments, among them the transformation of a trouble-ridden, ethnically divided city to become a country - all in 50 years - where all of us have space and a common destiny to work towards. He leaves behind the metropolis that, in 1965, he promised he would turn Singapore into.

"He emerged in our midst in the turbulent political times of the 1950s. His coming into our political scene was a turning point in Singapore's modern political history. His considerable stature and personality awed many of us.

"He gave us leadership and lived by example. There are many stories and accolades of his contributions to Singapore's political history and regional politics.

"His greatest contribution to us was the strength he gave us, at a time when forces of destruction were seeking to destroy us and turn Singapore into a Communist state. He helped us to stand up and fight back, those disruptive forces, despite the overwhelming strength with which they sought to destroy our society.

"We will miss this giant of a man. May his soul rest in peace."