Friends, relatives bid emotional final farewell to Kovan murder victims

Chiu Peace
The Tan family gathered to console the older victim's wife.
The Tan family gathered to console the older victim's wife.

Even the heavens opened up as friends and family said goodbye to the victims of the Kovan double murder on Tuesday afternoon at Mandai Crematorium.

The father-and-son pair, Tan Boon Sin, 66, and Tan Chee Heong, 42, were killed in a grisly double murder case in Kovan last Wednesday.

Over 100 people attended the Buddhist ceremony at a service hall in the crematorium. Two gold coffins with floral designs engraved on the sides, holding the two victims’ bodies, were placed in the front of the hall. A small bouquet of white flowers was placed on the coffin of the younger victim. Friends and relatives said their prayers and offered their condolences to the family as music was played. 

The family held back tears during the hour-long ceremony, with the younger victim's younger son, 3, eating ice cream, seemingly unaware of the sombre occasion.

As heavy rain began to pour, the coffins were rolled into the furnace for cremation as the grieving family bid their final goodbyes.

But as the family exited the visiting hall, Ong Ah Tang, the wife of the older Mr Tan, began sobbing and had to be supported by other family members as she was too frail to stand.

The younger son of Tan Boon Sin and the older son of Tan Chee Heong, 10, carried the pictures of their fathers as they left the visiting hall.

After the ceremony ended, the close-knit family gathered at the resting area, with many consoling Ong and one relative carrying Tan Chee Heong's younger son who was visibly tired.

Earlier in the day, at the victims’ wake at the Teochew Funeral Parlour at 10 Ubi Road 4, three priests and 15 family members took part in funeral rites, according to The Straits Times. About 40 other friends and relatives were at the wake.

After that, two hearses went round the workplaces of both victims before heading to Mandai Crematorium.

34-year-old police officer Iskandar Bin Rahmat, who was formally interdicted from the police force on Monday, was charged on the same day with two counts of murder.

The senior staff sergeant has been with the police force for 14 years.

He was also the police officer attending to elder victim Tan Boon Sin when he made a police report in November 2012 over the theft of a safety deposit box at CISCO. The extent of the relationship between the two is not known although it has been reported both were in regular touch over the status of the theft case.

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