Dr Michael Leong was especially happy in the last few years -- he had sold his business (ShareInvestor.com) for millions of dollars and he was spending his time the way he wanted, especially with his family.

PaulineQuah3.16But cancer took him away last month (Feb 2016). At age 54, he was gone too early for his family and friends. (See: )

Another untimely loss happened just last week: Pauline Quah Li Yin died in her sleep, according to people who know her. She was DBS Bank's managing director for SME Banking. She was only 46, and married without children.


Her full-page obituary in The Straits Times said she left "so suddenly and without suffering." 

I cast my mind mind back to the last 10 years or so, and recall a number of other people (well-known at least to various sectors of the Singapore financial industry) who tragically bid goodbye too early.

"Remembering that I'll be dead soon is the most important tool I've ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything — all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure — these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important." 

– Steve Jobs (who died in 2011 at age 56. He suffered from pancreatic cancer) 

Such poignant cases (and those of more ordinary folk who are close and dear to us) remind us to be proactive in guarding our health.

While deadly killers such as cancer are difficult to pre-empt totally, many debilitating diseases such as diabetes and stroke and heart attacks often can be kept at bay through informed diets and lifestyles. (See for example: Risk factors for cancer


LarryLam obituary
62
Larry Lam: Died at 62 (in 2014) from cancer

Larry was founder of Portek International and its MD and chairman. The company was listed on the Singapore Exchange until it was sold to Mitsui & Co in 2011.

Larry and his family owned 41% of Portek when it was privatised for S$213.5 million This put tens of millions of dollars of cold cash into their coffers but, tragically, Larry was struck by cancer shortly later. After a brief battle with the disease, he died.

(See: )

 


curtismontgomery

55

Curtis Montgomery: Died at 55 (in 2015) from a heart attack

His claim to fame was being a pioneer in the Singapore financial Web space by setting up in 1999 Wallstraits.com, a subscription-based portal with investing information and insights.

The site subsequently closed down, and Curtis returned to the US where he started a farm. He died of a heart attack. (See: Curtis Montgomery has passed away)

300 wongss
62
Wong Sheung Sze: Died at 62 (in 2015) from Parkinson's disease 

The founder and executive chairman of Singapore-listed Broadway Industrial was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease in 2012.

Three years later he was dead. There is currently no cure for the disease, which causes a person's brain to slowly lose control over the person's movements, body and emotions. 


andrewng gp4.14

64

Andrew Ng: Died at 64 (in 2014)

He was Chairman and CEO of GP Batteries International, which is listed on the Singapore Exchange. His death is doubly tragic because he reportedly took his own life. 

(See: )


 

dennis ng leverage

43

Dennis Ng: Died at 43 (in 2012) from a heart attack

He was well-known for his personal finance seminars and high profile in the print and online media.  

He won admirers as much for his personal investment success as for his down-to-earth lifestyle -- he continued to live in a HDB flat with his family and travelled on public transport.  

Dennis died of a heart attack. (See: High-profile finance expert dies of a heart attack after a seminar

(See also: Eulogy for Dennis Ng – Lessons from my teacher) 

 

57

Robert Chandran: Died at 57 (in 2008) in a helicopter crash

"In class, I was one of the idiots who said 'I will be a millionaire by 30.' The whole class laughed. They knew how poor I was, and I also laughed. It's embarrassing but this became my slogan in life," said Mr Chandran, who did become a millionaire by 29.

He was founder and CEO of a major oil trader, Chemoil Energy which listed on the Singapore Exchange in 2006. It was privatised in 2014 after his death in a helicopter crash in Indonesia in 2008.

 

(See: Chandran was 'alive, talking' when pulled from wreck

richardstanley

48

Richard Stanley: Died at 48 (in 2009) from infection during cancer treatment

He was about one year into his job as DBS Group Holdings' CEO when he was diagnosed with acute myelogenous leukemia.

His downturn started innocently enough with cough and high fever during the Lunar New Year weekend of Jan 2009. He died three months later (April).  

"His form of leukemia was treatable and he had been responding well to treatment. After two rounds of chemotherapy, earlier this week, his doctors believed that his cancer was in remission.

"Unfortunately, his weakened immune system made him susceptible to infection. His condition rapidly deteriorated over the last 48 hours and he succumbed to the infection," said DBS in a statement.  

That makes him probably the top-most SGX listed company CEO to die on the job in recent memory.

(See: DBS CEO afflicted with same cancer as Ken Watanabe)


350 sok chuang wake

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Chew Sok Chuang: Died at 54 (in 2009) from cancer

She was head of research at the now-defunct Westcomb Financial for a good number of years before joining Temasek Holdings as a consumer analyst in mid 2007.

She died of cancer.

(See: )

 

151sun liping
56
Sun Liping: Died at 56 (in 2014) from cancer

He was founder and Chairman of SunVic Chemical, a S-chip listed on the Singapore Exchange. He stepped down in 2013 to undergo cancer treatment. He died the following year. 

 

44

FranklinHengFranklin Heng: Died at 44 (in 2009) after liposuction gone wrong

The CEO of YTL Starhill Global Reit Management suffocated when his airway collapsed during a liposuction procedure in an Orchard Road clinic.

He wa
s 44. Years later, his family sued two doctors and was awarded S$5.3 million in damages by the court. 

Magnus Bocker: Died at 55 (in 2017) from cancer 

55



Image result for magnus bockerHe was CEO of the Singapore Exchange for more than five years, stepping down in 2015. After that, he ran his own private investment firm Blibros. 



43

Ben Goi Kok Neng: Died at 43 (in 2019) from heart attack

The son of Popiah King Sam Goi had just gotten married (in Sept 2017) to former Malaysian-born actress Tracy Lee.

A son was born to the couple in May 2018.

Ben, one of four children of Sam Goi, was a non-executive director of four listed companies: Serial System, Yamada Green Resources, KOP Limited and Union Steel. 


SWH flowers
67

Sim Wong Hoo: Died at age 67 in 2023.

The well-known tech entrepreneur who was chairman and CEO of Creative Technology ran some 50 marathons and 20 ultra marathons, starting from his 50s. No cause of death has been publicly given. 

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Comments  

#2 sceptical 2016-03-13 23:59
I am highly critical of the booming construction of buildings and digging of roads in Singapore.

Brand new schools and CC are torn down to be rebuild again. Hospital are forever building new wings . I am sure the patients inside are suffering.

so many cancer cases rising from all these polluting activities. Not to mention the overcrowding of our MRT and roads and parks from all these foreign workers.
+1 #1 Cats 2016-03-12 22:01
Some people I have come across, especially the more talented ones, work very hard to achieve success and $$. Rarely do they work very hard at keeping healthy and fit through exercise and a diet that is well-informed. There are tell tale signs. They have aged faster than their peers. They may have thinning hair, or prematurely grey hair. They may have a big belly from overdrinking and overeating. They may have high blood pressure...and a hot temper. etc.

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