Friday, March 01, 2013

Low Kim Swee (Bukit Brown)

The tomb of Mr Low Kim Swee with peg number 1240, located at Hill 5 came up with an interesting inside into a ronggeng (a type of Malay dance) competition held in the New World, owned by Mr Ong Boon Tat and a double tragedy leading to both the death's of Low Kim Swee and Ong Boon Tat, 17 years later.
Peg 1240 - Low Kim Swee 
Ronggeng Champion
In May 1924, a large crowd attended a ronggeng competition between Mr Low Kim Swee (of Singapore) and Inche Chik Sulong (of Medan). Judges had difficulty deciding on a winner that they had to call for another competition.
May 17, 1924
(source: NewspaperSG)

May 20, 1924
(source: NewspaperSG)

Double Tragedy 
On July 5, 1941, Ong Boon Tat (son of Ong Sam Leong) invited a party of friends which included Mr and Mrs Low Kim Swee, Ong Boon Tat's sisters and brothers to their island residence in Pulau Dama. At around 4pm on that fateful day, Mr Ong Boon Tat, Mr Low Kim Swee and a malay man named Ahmat arrived to inspect the pavilion when suddenly the sea pavilion collapsed and buried them.

During the inquiry, they initially believed that the sea pavilion was build under the guidance of Mr Low Kim Swee who works for United Engineers, but the final conclusion was that Mr Low Kim Swee is actually a good friend of Mr Ong Boon Tat and was there under his invitation. Further evidence by Mr Ong Tiang Wee (son of Mr Ong Boon Tat) shared that his father for the past two months, has been bringing friends to the island and that on July 5, his father invited Mr and Mrs Low Kim Swee over together with his son, Mr Ong Tiang Wee (T.W. Ong). Fortunately, he declined (which probably saved his live).

Low Kim Swee died on July 5, 1941 at the age of 52, killed on the spot at Pulau Dama. His friend, Mr Ong Boon Tat (also buried in Bukit Brown), died 3 days later.
Mr Low Kim Swee and Madam Lim Tit Neo
Another tragedy will happen again when the 8 lane highway comes and Mr Low Kim Swee remains if  remained unclaimed, will be disposed off.


References
Public Amusements. (1924, May 19). The Straits Times, page 10
Two Deaths in one mishap. (1941, July 23). The Straits Times, page 11
Inquiry on the death of Mr Ong Boon Tat. (1941, July 15). The Straits Times, page 12

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