Singaporeans' creative hashtag to pay tributes to Mr Lee Kuan Yew

Some Singaporeans were using the creative hashtag ​ #thankyew on Wednesday (March 25).

Others passed word around online to get as many people as possible to wear black on Sunday (March 29), the day of Mr Lee Kuan Yew's funeral.

Singaporeans took to the social media to show their gratitude to the nation's founding father.

Here are some of them: They thanked him for...


Maybebabysg: "... dedicating your life to Singapore and its future, and may you rest in peace."

Oreowah: "If not for you, Mr Lee Kuan Yew, my mama and I will not be able to gaigai (=go out) at night safely, I will not have imported food to survive in a country with no natural resources, I will not have a team of doctors and nurses who worked so hard under the equal-for-all education system that you've developed, and I will not have a clean, sheltered place to live in if not for your incredible foresight.

Yvonnelifan: "She's (my daughter) blessed to be born in a modern country with nothing to worry about but to embrace a future with infinite possibilities. Thank you, Mr Lee for all that you have done for the generations to come." 

Debbiecxq: "Would be nice to see the nation unite as one for the man who fought so resiliently for our independence."

Iwaniwan: "Mr Lee for making Singapore a better place."

Curiousdottedline: "A tribute to Mr Lee Kuan Yew - an acknowledgement to a great man and a powerful leader who chose a life of contribution. He didn't have to, but he did. It wasn't easy but he did it anyway (such an honorable bad ass). The night before the news, I thought of how he has completed his work here and whether he is physically here or not, his presence and contribution are very much alive in this country. So it was strange to me - being this emotionally impacted by the news of his passing. He has always been someone I "knew" (from the social studies textbook and all the national education programmes we had in school) and yet, never really knew. 
I am impacted. I have not thought about or articulated this much before but deep down,  I am madly grateful to him. I do not care to assess or evaluate his ways; or compare what we have today to what we could have or who could have done a better job. 
What I have today is because of him. And I am absolutely clear on that.

"His government gave my dad a stable job, which gave my parents the means to start a family and have a home to call our own. His emphasis on education gave existence to my academic achievements, which contributed significantly to my personal growth and development. I am fortunate to never have to worry about my livelihood or my safety.

"I have gratitude and enormous respect for him. He has lived for a cause way bigger than himself."

Germanwings cancels flight after fatal crash as pilots refuse to fly

Debris at the crash site in the French Alps above the town of Seyne.
The distinctive colours of the crashed Germanwings plane are spotted in this aerial photo of the aircraft's destroyed rudder.

Some pilots at German low-cost airline Germanwings refused to fly on Wednesday following the deadly crash of one of the budget airlines' planes in the French Alps, saying they were mourning the victims of the doomed aircraft.

A spokesman for Germanwings’ parent company, Lufthansa, said: "One Germanwings flight has been cancelled because pilots don’t feel they are in a position to fly."

She did not reveal how many pilots had declined to work.

A rescue helicopter flying over the French Alps during a search and rescue operation near the crash site. Photo: Reuters

The Airbus that crashed on Tuesday killing all 144 passengers and six crew was travelling from the Spanish city of Barcelona to the German city of Duesseldorf.

The cancelled flight had been due to fly from Duesseldorf to Barcelona.

Mirror reported that the doomed jet had been grounded for repairs just 24 hours before its fatal last flight.

It quoted a Germanwings spokesman as saying: "The repair was purely to fix a noise that the door was making, and the aircraft was flying again from 10am on Monday."

Search and rescue personnel being lowered from a rescue helicopter to the crash site. Photo: AFP


A spokesman for the pilots’ union Vereinigung Cockpit, Joerg Handwerg, insisted that the decision was not because of safety concerns.

"It has nothing to do with safety. The pilots have friends and colleagues who have died," he said on television.

"That is such a heavy emotional burden that it’s better not to get into the cockpit."

Debris at the crash site. Photo: AFP


Already on Tuesday, some pilots were too shocked to fly following the news of the crash.

"We understand their decision," Germanwings executive Thomas Winkelmann had said.

'Black box' recovered

No distress call was received before the plane crashed 2,000m above sea level.

French authorities said one of the two "black box" flight recorders has been recovered. 

Smoke billowing from the debris at the crash site. Photo: AFP


French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve told RTL radio: "The black box has been damaged. We will have to put it back together in the next few hours to be able to get to the bottom of this tragedy."

Mr Cazeneuve said the fact debris was scattered over a small area of about one and a half hectares showed the plane likely did not explode in the air.

French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve (centre) arriving in Seyne, south-eastern France, on Tuesday (March 24). Photo: AFP


A large number of the victims are believed to be German and Spanish nationals.

Among them were 16 students and two teachers from Joseph-Koenig-Gymnasium secondary school returning home after a week-long exchange programme in Spain.

Students gathering at a memorial of flowers and candles in front of Joseph-Koenig-Gymnasium secondary school in Germany. Photo: AFP

Sources: AFP, Reuters, Mirror

Baey Yam Keng: What I learned from Mr Lee Kuan Yew

The first time Mr Baey Yam Keng met Mr Lee Kuan Yew, it was during his interview before he was fielded as a candidate for the People's Action Party in the 2006 General Election. 

"He was the one among the panel who asked the most questions," Mr Baey told The New Paper at the Tampines Community Plaza, where residents were penning tributes to Singapore's first Prime Minister who died on Monday (March 23), aged 91. 

Mr Baey Yam Keng (from second left), Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew, Ms Indranee Rajah and Associate Professor Koo Tsai Kee celebrating the PAP’s walkover in Tanjong Pagar GRC on Nomination Day in the 2006 General Election. PHOTO: BT File

"Even though my views were not entirely congruent with the Government's views, he was very patient in listening to me, to understand where I was coming from.

"He took the trouble to listen to a young man like me."



Mr Baey, Member of Parliament for Tampines GRC, was at the community plaza on Tuesday speaking to residents. He was formerly an MP for Tanjong Pagar GRC, where, he said, he could sense the "admiration and love people have for him (Mr Lee)".

"It's through the sincere gratitude and respect for him that we have this outpouring of emotions for him after his passing."

Mr Lee Kuan Yew (seated) with (from left) fellow Tanjong Pagar GRC MPs Sam Tan, Indranee Rajah, Koo Tsai Kee, Lui Tuck Yew and Baey Yam Keng at an event marking the completion of a covered linkway in Jalan Membina, and the annual Tree Planting Day in the GRC in 2010. PHOTO: ST File

On Mr Lee Kuan Yew as a mentor

"He would be the one doing most of the talking. I think that's where we could learn a lot from him, listening to his wisdom. 



On Mr Lee Kuan Yew's relationship with Mrs Lee

"On different occasions we could also see the loving relationship he had with Mrs Lee. 

"Mrs Lee would always be the person who would put in a nice word to lighten up the sometimes tense atmosphere, because the younger ones would always be in awe of him."

PHOTO: MediaCorp

On Lee Kuan Yew's legacy

"He has lived a full, long life. We can take comfort in the fact that he is now with Mrs Lee and the loving couple can now be together.

"What we can do to remember him, to let his legacy live on is to have Singapore be a good place. We Singaporeans should continue to do our best for the country."

Watch: Former newsreader Duncan Watt on Mr Lee - 'Thank you for being Singapore'

Former Ch 5 newsreader Duncan Watt was one of the many who headed down to Parliament House early this morning (March 25) to pay his respects to the late Mr Lee Kuan Yew. 

Mr Watt, now 72, was a newsreader on local television from 1980 to 1998. 

He arrived early in the morning to queue outside Parliament House. 

Describing the experience, he said: "It was Singapore ... it was really efficient. We had to wait quite a long time, I was early. Once the coffin arrived, it was very, very quick. 

"We couldn't linger too long, but (they were efficient in) getting us in and getting us out."

Mr Watt also revealed that he had written a letter to Mr Lee Kuan Yew in the past. 

"I did write him a letter ... must be 20 years ago, just saying 'thank you' for being Singapore."

Stefanie Sun heads to Parliament House to pay respects to Mr Lee Kuan Yew

Mandopop star Stefanie Sun was among the first in the queue outside Parliament House this morning (March 25), reports

The 36-year-old was waiting to pay her respects to Singapore's first Prime Minister, Mr Lee Kuan Yew, whose body lies in state at Parliament House from today to March 28. 

After his death was announced on March 23, the singer tweeted her condolences:



She penned a moving tribute to the late Mr Lee for The Straits Times, in which she recalled singing Mr Lee's wife's favourite song, Que Sera Sera, at the Business Chinese Awards in 2011, after Mrs Lee's death. 

(Senior Minister of State) Josephine Teo later told me in private that she saw tears in his eyes.


More reports at

Chants, tears, as Mr Lee Kuan Yew's casket leaves Istana

"Lee Kuan Yew! Lee Kuan Yew!"

Outside the Istana, along Bras Basah Road and North Bridge Road, and outside Parliament House, was a scene like never before. 



At 9am, as the Coffin Bearer Party prepared the casket bearing Singapore's founding Prime Minister, Mr Lee Kuan Yew, to be moved to Parliament House from Sri Temasek, crowds across the civic district fell silent. 

Their arms were outstretched, phones ready to capture pictures and videos of the Gun Carriage bearing the casket passing by. 

And as it did, some in the crowd clapped, some chanted his name and some broke down. 









The Gun Carriage bearing the casket left Sri Temasek after 9am this morning (March 25). The State Flag was draped over the casket - the highest State honour accorded to a leader. 






The foot procession from Sri Temasek was led by Chief Mourner and eldest son of the late Mr Lee, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and his wife Ho Ching; the late Mr Lee’s daughter Dr Lee Wei Ling; his youngest son, Mr Lee Hsien Yang and his wife Lee Suet Fern; his grandchildren XiuQi, Yipeng, Hongyi, Haoyi, Shengwu, Huanwu and Shaowu. 







The Gun Carriage bearing the casket then made its way to Parliament House via Bras Basah Road and North Bridge Road. At Parliament House, the casket was received by the Chief of Defence Force, Lieutenant-General Ng Chee Meng, and Commissioner of Police, Hoong Wee Teck, Speaker of Parliament, as well as the Prime Minister and the rest of the family. 






Members of the public can pay their respects from 10am to 8pm from March 25 to 28. Queues will start at the riverside Promenade next to Parliament House. Condolence cards will be made available for them to pen their tributes.

Please visit for updates.  

More reports at

Lee Kuan Yew in our daily lives

In his tribute to the late Lee Kuan Yew, The New Paper's creative editor Ken Jalleh Jr wrote: 

"Throughout his life, he brushed off all talk of legacy.

"Yet that legacy is clear. 

"His legacy is your life."

Many people have said that Singaporeans only had to look around them to see and feel Mr Lee's legacy - it's in our trees, skyscrapers, safe streets, clean air and even in the languages we speak.

Ever since his death on March 23, Singaporeans have taken that to a whole new different level, incorporating Mr Lee's image into their daily lives - on their precious cars, on their delicate finger nails and even in their toys.

Here are some of the best examples:

1. Mr Lee is now the face on cars and motorcycles




My small tribute to the late former Prime Minister of Singapore Lee Kuan Yew.

A photo posted by HORORGASM (@hororgasm) on




#lky #ktm #duke200 #motorcycle

A photo posted by jason ang (@jasonangang) on



2. He has inspired flowers to be given out free so every one can stop to smell the roses



3. He has brought out the artistic talent in people


4. The notes have someone's face on them already, but the $1 coin is still available


5. Mr and Mrs Lee may be the next Lego characters


24 March 2015 | 83/365 Singapore will always be synonymous with Mr Lee Kuan Yew. #ThankYouLKY

A photo posted by Ben L. (@mortpenguin) on

6. Mr Lee's on their finger nails



Lky #nailedyougood

A photo posted by Lewbacca Chewing Ba Kua (@iamrachelew) on









Age no barrier for him

Sean Penn stars in his first action film, The Gunman

Sean Penn.

We women like to tell ourselves that age is just a number.

And it sure looks like Hollywood agrees - at least when it comes to male stars.

The names that adorn the billboards today are pretty much those that anchored action flicks in the 80s and 90s.

Sylvester Stallone, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Tom Cruise are icons who are still kicking it and chopsocking the bad guys.

The latest retro veteran to jump into the world of action films is Sean Penn.

The 54-year-old stars in The Gunman, which opens here on April 9, over 30 years after his first movie role.

In The Gunman, he plays Terrier, a brutal mercenary-turned-humanitarian whose past has come back to haunt him.

With his life at stake, Terrier must return to his old ways and track down those who want him dead.

Also starring Javier Bardem and Idris Elba, The Gunman is an all-out action flick that sees Penn unleashing his anger on his assailants in every possible way.

Directed by Taken's Pierre Morel, The Gunman is Penn's attempt at rebranding his career, one that takes him from highbrow dramas to mass appeal entertainment.

Known as a terrific actor with two Oscars and many other awards to his name, Penn has taken great pains to be part of the "old guy in action movies" clique.

First, he served as The Gunman's producer, which means he has full say in what he wants to do. Second, he gave his body a facelift.

A six-pack and bulging muscles are not exactly what you'd associate with Penn, but that's what he transformed himself into. A proportionate Stallone, so to speak.

In an interview with USA Today, Penn brushed off questions about his "new body", simply saying it was "diet and exercise".

"I find anatomical discussions much more interesting when centred on the female form," he said. "So I'll leave it at that."

In keeping with his penchant for method acting, Penn attended a special military training camp to help get into character and also did many of the stunts himself.

Only time will tell if the world will appreciate Sean Penn 2.0 the way it embraced the rebranded Liam Neeson.

For a no-nonsense guy like Penn to go out on a limb like this and put up his gloves for a good old rumble is an interesting development. It may well open up another avenue for Penn to flex his acting muscles.

So what if The Gunman opened to only US$5 million (S$6.8 million) at the US box office last week and was totally eclipsed by the young adult actioner The Divergent Series: Insurgent?

Not that Penn cares. He is Sean Penn, after all, and if he decides to play to Hollywood's current fetish for geriatric action heroes, young guns like Taylor Lautner can jolly well wait in line.

LEE KUAN YEW 1923 - 2015

Day 2 in pictures

Yesterday, more people turned up to pen their condolences at the Istana and at designated community tribute spots around the island. Family and friends continued to stream into Sri Temasek to pay their respects

IN BLOOM: An orchid named after Mr Lee Kuan Yew was presented to PM Lee at the Istana. Aranda Lee Kuan Yew took three to five years to breed and grow. This was the first time the plant had bloomed and it coincided with Mr Lee’s passing. The orchid will be on display at the Parliament House, where the body of Mr Lee will lie in state before his funeral.
CONDOLENCES: President Tony Tan Keng Yam examining the thousands of messages at the main gate of the Istana.
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong spent time chatting with well-wishers. According to reports, a few people shouted in his direction: "Be strong, Mr Lee!" and he called back: "Thank you!"
RESPECT: Minister for National Development and People’s Action Party chairman Khaw Boon Wan and his wife paying their respects at the private family wake.
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Up To Mischief

Meant For Two:The Tailgate Grill ($53) for two has pork sausages, pork ribs, jerk chicken, ribeyes, potatoes and lemon lime slaw.

The latest food-and-beverage outlet at the Esplanade Mall is also the latest celebrity-owned restaurant in Singapore.

Local actresses Cynthia Koh and Michelle Chong have partnered with former radio DJ Daniel Ong and the people behind Tab, Rookery and Suprette to open Mischief, serving American street food and alcohol.

Americana is not a new concept but the famous faces are an attraction - the restaurant is good for star-spotting.

I recommend going on a Sunday afternoon - the only afternoon when it's open - because it's perfect for a lazy few hours with a bottle of beer by your side (or wine, if you're so inclined, and Mischief has an extensive list of alcohol) and just taking it slow.

The menu, as my lunch partner observed, is very masculine. It is full of meat to go with beer.

But the portions for the starters are quite demure. The prices look friendly on paper but when the dishes were served, they were smaller than I expected.

It seems that Mischief makes up for the scanty portions with the mains -they appeared plus-sized to me.

WHAT: Mischief

WHERE: #01-02 Esplanade Mall

WHEN: 5pm to 1am Mondays to Thursdays, 5pm to 3am Fridays and Saturdays, 11am to 11pm Sundays

CALL: 6532-0481




The Tailgate Grill ($53) for two has pork sausages, pork ribs, jerk chicken, ribeyes, potatoes and lemon lime slaw. The ribs were fall-off-the-bone tender and the slaw was exceptional. I just wish it was a bigger portion.


When I think american food, I think of a cheeseburger. The one at mischief, called good ol' cheeseburger ($22), is hardly extraordinary but it is tasty and fills up the stomach. The patty is hearty and juicy, served with a side of well-fried fries.



The Great Balls of Fire ($14) are meatballs - a tad dry but full-flavoured - with an amazing marinara sauce. The portion is tiny, the individual meatballs ever tinier. But ultimately, the flavour wins.


Mischief Wings ($15) come with a choice of garlic soy sesame glaze, Cola BBQ Sauce or Mischief Hot Sauce. The garlic soy sesame wings were a tad salty, so perhaps we should have taken the server's advice and gone with the hot sauce.


Big Dog Soft Taco ($8) is a taco for one. Choose a filling of Korean BBQ beef, jerk chicken or fried fish. We chose beef. With the way the ingredients complemented each other, you might be tempted to order another.