From Spurs to S'pore: Our sympathy's with you, Sonia & family
It's not just the teaching fraternity that's rallying around Tanjong Katong Primary School when the new school term started this week.
The school had lost nine of their own — seven pupils and two teachers — to the earthquake that struck on June 5 while the group was on an expedition at Mount Kinabalu in Sabah.
As families, friends, pupils and colleagues recover from the devastating loss, one English Premier League club is reaching out during this difficult time.
The letter from Spurs' head coach to the late TKPS pupil Sonia Jhala's family. PHOTO: FACEBOOK SCREENGRAB/ SONIA JHALA
Tottenham Hotspur head coach Mauricio Pochettino, 43, signed off on a letter addressed to the family of one of the pupils who perished, Sonia Jhala.
The 12-year-old was an avid Spurs fan.
Addressed to her businessman-father Jadip and mother Karen, the letter read:
"It is with great sadness that we have heard the news of the loss of Sonia Jhala.
"We have been made aware that Sonia supported Tottenham Hotspur all of her life and loved football."
During Sonia's funeral service, many mourners came dressed in the club's football jerseys.
The Today newspaper reported that those without a jersey came decked in the team’s colours of blue and white because Sonia’s sister Karishma, 18, had requested them to do so.
Her parents also took turns donning a bright yellow and blue Tottenham Hotspur scarf throughout the day, before placing it in the coffin at the end of the funeral service.
A trainer from Sabah Hillary Augustinus (right) met up with TKPS pupils, teachers and the parents of Sonia Jhala, (centre) on June 17. PHOTO: ST FILE
Extending his condolences on behalf of all club staff and players, Pochettino added:
"We know that (Sonia) will be sadly missed. Our sympathy goes out to you all this difficult time."
Here's what Sonia's family thinks of the club's gesture.
PHOTO: FACEBOOK SCREENGRAB/ SONIA JHALA
Last year, another bereaved family — that of Malaysia Airlines flight MH370's chief steward Andrew Nari — also found comfort when Liverpool FC responded to his daughter Maira's tweet.
Mr Nari was on board the Beijing-bound flight, which disappeared on March 8 after losing contact with air traffic control.
A week later, Maria had tweeted to her father, an avid Liverpool fan, to come home during the Liverpool-Manchester United match.
The club's direct response went viral.
The missing flight was carrying 227 passengers and 12 crew members.
Prime Minister Najib Razak eventually announced that the plane’s journey had “ended” in the southern Indian Ocean although the plane has yet to be found.
Sources: Facebook, Twitter, Today