Passing Away of a Grand Old Lady

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On Wednesday, 4 October 2006, everyone at Wan Ching Yuen Centre and Than Hsiang Temple mourned the loss of Mdm. Khoo Keat Yew at 94 years of age. Than Hsiang staff, volunteers, fellow residents of Wan Ching Yuen Centre, and relatives chanted Amituofo (Amitabha Buddha's name) continuously for eight hours following her passing away and transferred merit to her.

Mdm. Khoo retired as a Deputy Headmistress of Sekolah Rendah Kebangsaan Peng Hwa in 1972 after having served for more than forty years as a teacher. She came to stay at Wan Ching Yuen Centre on 10 July 1999. Still strong and healthy at 87 years of age, she took it upon herself to help around, like in distributing the rice at meal times.

Although single, Mdm. Khoo had looked after her nephews and nieces and this loving relationship had resulted in her having a big family. She was also the godmother of Venerable Wei Wu; indicating her close friendship with Venerable Wei Wu's mother.

On Thursday, 5 October 2006, in his Dharma talk to the staff, Venerable Wei Wu advised everyone to reflect on the impermanence of life. He said death is certain, only when it will occur is uncertain. At the moment of death, all of one's belongings, loved ones, money, etc. would not be of help. Only one's karma will follow us in death, therefore it is very important, crucial even, to remember the Dharma at the last breath. By trusting in Amitabha's vows, earnestness in going to Pure Land and diligent chanting of “Amituofo” will enable one to gain rebirth in the Pure Land.

After lying in wake for three days at Da Bei Dian, Mdm. Khoo's funeral was held on the third day, 6 October 2006. Venerable Wei Wu and the Sangha members of Than Hsiang chanted prayers followed by Venerable Buddhavamsa and Theravada Sangha members chanting in Pali. Everyone then paid his or her last respects before the cortege left Than Hsiang Temple at 2.00pm for the Crematorium in the United Hokkien Cemetery in Jalan Batu Gantong. There, some prayers in the Theravada and Mahayana Traditions were chanted before the coffin was rolled into the Crematorium.

A few days later, on Tuesday, 10 October 2006, Mdm. Khoo's relatives, Venerable Wei Wu, some Sangha members, and Ms. Kang Sok Meng, manager of Wan Ching Yuen Centre, went to collect the ashes for placement at the Kwang Tung & Teng Chow Association's Columbarium in Mt. Erskine Road.

May Mdm. Khoo Keat Yew find her spiritual destination. Amituofo.