Lim Yew Teok and Chan Mei Tuan (Bukit Brown)

I am not sure what business Lim Yew Teok was involved in but there were several advertisements that linked him to renting out godowns at Ho Puay Quay during 1913-1914 and it list his office as either 17 Nankin Road or  56-5 Neil Road. Whatever it is, he was a businessman that left behind a substantial fortune, a fortune worth more than $100 million that was the source of many court battles. 

Lim Yew Teok passed away at the age of 68 on 6 October 1925 at his residence, No. 56-5, Neil Road. He leaves behind a widow, 4 sons, a daughter and several grandchildren. 
Mrs. Lim Yew Teok nee Chan Mek Tuan passed away at the age of 90 at No. 141 Neil Road on 16 July 1963. She leaves behind youngest son, Lim Boon Pin, daughters-in-law, Mrs. Lim Choo Yean, Mrs. Lim Geok Chip, Mrs. Lim Boon Pin,
Grandson; Lim Thian It, Lim Thian Pah, Lim Chng Beng, Lim Cheng Deen, Lim Hood Ewe, Lim Kee Loo, Lim Kee Team, Lim Kee Suan, Lim Kee Chan, Lim Cheng Huat, Lim Cheng Heng, Lim Cheng Quee, Lim Cheng Kiat, Lim Cheng Chuan, Chng Kiat Leng, Chng Heng Tat, 11 granddaughters, 10 granddaughters-in-law, 46 great grandchildren.

From their tomb; the name of the children listed;
Sons: Lim Geok Hoe, Lim Choo Yan, Lim Geok Chip, Lim Boon Pin
Daughter: Lim Chye Inn
Grandchildren: Lim Ah Kow, Lim Siew Tong, Lim Tian It, Lim Tian Kate, Lim Kee Loo, Lim Cheng Beng, Lim Hoon Ang, Lim Cheong Siong, Lim Ah Dek, Lim Kim Soo, Lim Kiat Leng.
Lim Yeok Teok 

Chan Mei Tuan 

The $100 million dollar will

Miss. Lim Chhui Ngor (daughter of Madam Koh Tek Leh) was the last direct blood descendant and she passed away unmarried and childless in her 50's away on 29 June 2006 without any known next-of-kin, leaving behind a $102 million inheritance. She was the great-granddaughter of Lim Yew Teok whose estate includes more than $100 million of OCBC shares and a house in Neil Road (141 Neil Road) worth $2 million. Another interesting point to note was that Lim Yew Teok's will specifically stated that the distribution date of the will was to be 21 years after the death of his last surviving son (which would have been Lim Boon Pin). Also interesting to note, was that the will has since 1938 went to court for interpretation 5 times and the assets including properties and shares were held in Trust with the British and Malayan Trustees. Income from the trust was to be distributed in 95 shares or portions to his beneficiaries. It was believed that some $1.2 million was generated from the trust fund every year. With the deaths of Miss. Lim Chhui Ngor ancestors over the years, she ended up with 40 shares, receiving $700,000 a year. 

When Miss. Lim Chhui Ngor passed away, administrators of her estate tried tracking down the surviving kin with only a photograph of Miss Lim as a child with her mother and 2 maternal aunts. Volunteering to search at their own expense was the Goh Brothers (Raymond Goh and Charles Goh) who helped map out the complex family tree which was used as court documents. The trustees managed to trace one of the maternal aunt, Madam Koh Tek Heng but the High Court ruling in January 2008 said she will not get Miss. Lim share and separately 2 half-blood paternal aunts, (Madam Chng Heng Choo and Madam Chng Heng Tee who were daughters of Miss Lim grandfather and second wife) made claims for part of Miss Lim's 40 shares. In August 2008, the High Courts ruled that in accordance to Mr. Lim Yew Teok's will, neither Madam Koh Tek Heng nor Madam Chng Heng Choo /Chng Heng Tee were entitled to the money. Miss Lim's part of the fortune would return to the residual pool and be divided among the other existing beneficiaries of her great-grandfather's will, who are descended from his 5 adopted sons and nephews. Not satisfied with the decision, both camps appealed. This was was brought up to the Court of Appeal again who in February 2009 rule that the two camps of claimants will received nothing.  


In a 2008 article, it was mentioned that Lim Yew Teok 5 adopted sons has no offsprings and it was from his daughter, Lim Chye Inn who had 4 children of whom only son produced an heir - Miss Lim Chhui Ngor. I found that a bit puzzling and contradictory as there were other grandchildren names listed at the tomb of Lim Yew Teok and Chan Mei Tuan. (will update if i get more information, but there were other beneficiaries who stepped up and claimed as reported. Do read the 2008 court finding on how the bulk of the shares ended up with Miss. Lim Chhu Nghor).  

Close to 13 million OCBC shares (12,944,000) at 2009
(source: OCBC annual report)

141 Neil Road

The family home mentioned in the will of the late Mr. Lim Yew Teok, was the home in 1983 where retired lawyer, Mr. Chng Kiat Leng passed away. (Chng Kiat Leng is one of the sons of Mr. Chng Pee Lam and Madam Lim Chye Inn ). Chng Kiat Leng was also the administrator and executor of the late Madam Chan Mei Tuan estate.

Chng Kiat Leng was born at the family home in 1924 and graduated from Harvard in 1949 with a first class honours degree in economics. He worked with the Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation before going into real estate where he built 10 bungalows at Fernhill and Ridout Road. He went on to Cambridge and Lincoln's Inn to study law. He passed away at the house due to hear failure on 30 March 1983. The person who was staying with him at the time was no other than Miss. Lim Chuui Goh who was in her 40s at that time. Unaware that he was dead, she stayed with his body until Mr. Chng's close friend, physiotherapist Miss. Ruth Chia raised the alarm 24 hours later. The furniture in the house estimated to be valued at $95,000 was almost auction off but fortunately stopped by the Estate and Trust Agencies of Collyer Quay who represents Mr. Chng's educationally subnormal niece, Miss Lim Chuui Ngoh.  

141 Neil Road 

Part of Peranakan furniture a the house (note the family portrait - to bad not clear enough) 

Mr. Chng Kiat Leng 


It is from the content of Lim Yew Teok will, i could gather a bit more insight about the family during the time when the will was written. 
  1. To his wife: CHAN MEK TUAN (10 shares)
  2. To his son: LIM GEOK CHIP (15 shares)
  3. To his daughter: LIM CHYE INN (20 shares)
  4. To his son: LIM GEOK HOH (at present in China - 2 shares)
  5. To his son: Lim Choo Yian (15 shares)
  6. To his son: Lim Boon Pin (13 shares)
  7. To his infant grandson: LIM AH KOW (son of his deceased son, LIM GEOK CHAI - 10 shares)
  8. To his nephew: LIM YEW TECK (son of his deceased brother, LIM KIM KHUAN -2 shares)
  9. To his nephew: LIM HIAN WAN (son of his decease brother, LIM KIM KHUAN - 2 shares)
  10. To each of of his nephew: LIM GEOK MAUH and LIM GEOK GONG (sons of decease brother, LIM SIAN KAK -2  shares)
  11. To his nephew: LIM GEOK HUAN (son of his youngest brother, LIM CHAN - 2 shares)

Daughter: Lim Chye Inn
Lim Chye Inn (wife of Chng Pee Lam) passed away at the age of 32 on 22 August 1927.  She is buried in Bukit Brown, just in front the tomb of her parents. From her tomb, the names of the children listed are:
Sons: Chng Cheng Teong, Chng Heng Lay, Chng Kiat Leng
Daughter: Chng Kim Soo

[ Note: The match between Lim Chye Inn has the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Lim Yew Teok can be established through the obituary notice of Mrs. Lim Yew Teok nee Chan Mek Tuan and her grandchildren matches the children of Madam Lim Chye Inn . The executor /adminstrator of Chan Mek Tuan estate is Chng Kiat Leng].

Location of tomb 

Lim Yew Teok and Chan Mei Tuan is buried in Block 1 Division G, plot 128 and 1/2 of 143. 

Lim Chye Inn  is buried in Block 1 Division G, plot 129

Both tombs are nearby the tomb of Neo Pee Teck.

Tomb of Mr. Lim Yew Teok and Madam Chan Mei Tuan

[research on-going]


Deaths. (1925, October 14). The Straits Times, page 8
Deaths. (1963,July 18). The Straits Times, page 16
Aunt in photo will not get share of inheritence. (2008, January 11). The Straits Times, page 59
Going, going..and the auction is gone. (1983, August 19). The Straits Times, page 9 
The case of the strange will and the next of kin tussle. (website). Asia Paranormal Investigators



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