Remembering victims and fallen heroes of Sabah Quake

Last Friday morning, Sabah was shaken by the 6.0M earthquake which lost us 18 precious lives including seven young children, two teachers, a camp instructor, four mountain guides and four climbers; injuring 69 others.

Pupil, teachers and instructor from Tanjong Katong Primary School whose live were perished in the Sabah Quake (Image from Singaporean Seen)

Mr Ghazi and Navdeep were the last two bodies recovered on Wednesday morning. (Image from Singaporean Seen)

On Sunday (7th June), three local artist drew a mural on an old ruined colonial building in honour to those life who were perished by the disaster. The mural was drawn based on a photograph of mountain guide Mohd Rizuan Kauhinin carrying Wafeeq, survivor and pupil of Tanjong Katong Primary School. Later that evening, locals and passer-by come and gather to pay their last respects there. A candle-lit vigil “Cahaya Lilin di Bawah Bayu” was held at that area, where locals placed flowers, lit-candles to pay respect to the victims and "You Raised Me Up" was played in the background. The crowd also sang Sabah state anthem, “Sabah Tanah Airku” during the vigil. 

The mural drawn by three local artist in honour of the victims of Mt Kinabalu. (Image from

A local paying respect to victims of Sabah earthquake. (Image from

The candle-lit vigil held on 7th June at the old colonial building. (Image from

A candle-lit vigil was also held in Kuala Lumpur on the 11th June as a remembrance to all who was perished by the earthquake. (Image from Getty Images)

In Singapore, 8th June was the National Remembrance Day for those who perished in the Sabah Quake.  A minute of silence were held that day before the SEA Games began and flag are at half-mast nationwide. In Tanjong Katong Primary School (TKPS), friends, family and teachers also leave notes and gifts and pay their last respects to their beloved fellow classmates, friends and teachers.

SINGAPORE: A moment of silence in respect of those lives perished in the Sabah Earthquake before SEA Games began on Monday morning. (Image from BBC)

SINGAPORE: Bouquets of flower left by friends, families, teachers and pupils at the hallway of Tanjong Katong Primary School to honour their schoolmates, teachers and friends that have been perished by the earthquake that hit Sabah on 5th of June. (Image from Channel News Asia,CNA)

Hand-written notes by pupils of TKPS filled with messages for their beloved teachers and friends. (Image from BBC)

Each teddy bear representing each and every life lost during the school expedition, placed by Primary 3 TKPS pupils. (Image from CNA)

A jersey placed by the Ministry of Education's Soccer Manager at TKPS for Mr Ghazi with a note written: Ghazi, I placed a no. 35 jersey in your school. Come home and wear it. Nasir". The jersey was placed there when Mr Ghazi was still missing, (Image from CNA)

The Pupils

Peony Wee Ying Ping

One of the first body recovered was a pupil from TKPS, Peony posted a video on her Facebook to record her moments in Mount Kinabalu where she told family and friends they were safe and well. Friends and family remembered Peony as a happy, sociable and out-going young girl. She had always helped out at her mother's traditional Chinese medicine clinic.

Karyl Mitzi Higuit Matahom

Karyl was a Filipino-Singaporean young girl who moved to Singapore 10 years ago. Family and friends describe Karyl as a kind girl, and very sweet, not only to her family but also to her friends and church member. She was really active in sport and really keen to join the expedition.

Rachel Ho Yann Shiuan

Rachel was an ambitious young girl who really likes netball and hoping to be in the Singaporean netball team when she grows up. Her father said she would also like to become a lawyer, a dentist or a banker. She is a girl who is always close to her family and would show her love to them by kissing and hugging them before bed.

Sonia Jhala

The sporty young girl who loves football and netball was remembered as a very cheerful girl who likes to dance. Her parents describe her as a princess which was filled with happiness and joy. That is why friends and family which came to her funeral Thursday morning (11th June) cheered “Hip Hip Hooray” moments before the funeral ended. Her parent said that that is the atmosphere Sonia would like. Many were also dressed in Tottenham Hotspur football jersey as that was her favourite football team. Her ambition was to be a sports teacher.

Emilie Giovanna Ramu

Emilie was a budding ballet dancer which was supposed to perform this week. She was also described as a caring and nice person by her fellow classmates. She and her best friend, Natasha were like sisters and will always comfort each other and spent time together during the weekends.

Ameer Ryyan bin Mohd Aded

Ameer is a promising football player in the school team. Fandi Ahamad, Singapore’s football icon remembered Ameer as a rising star with the right ingredient to become a future football player. His coach remembered him as a caring boy with a sense of humour. One of his teammates, Syarf recalled the moment when he was jokingly asking for the pair of soccer boots. Syarf said: “Ameer's grandfather bought him soccer boots from Germany. I was joking with him, asking if he could give them to me. He then asked if I really wanted them and he gave them to me. I'll wear them until they're spoilt and I'll get them repaired. I'll treasure them.”

Navdeep Singh Jaryal

Navdeep was the last two that was recovered on 10th June. His classmate describe him as a cute and handsome fellow. Navdeep father passed away two years ago leaving him, her mother and her sister. When his mother learnt that Navdeep went missing during the quake on Mt Kinabalu, she changed her Facebook profile picture to a picture of Navdeep and herself and cover photo to a picture of Navdeep hoping miracle could happen. Both his mother and sister also flown to Sabah to wait for updates when Navdeep was not found.


Teachers and Instructor

Mohammad Ghazi b Mohamed

One of the last two bodies recovered on Wednesday morning. Ghazi was a father of three and a PE teacher of TKPS and was remembered as a caring and compassionate teacher who always encourages his students to do their best. He is also known for spending time after school for football practices. Mr Ghazi was a greatly loved teacher whom many students of TKPS was praying for a safe return.

Loo Jian Liang Terrence

Mr Loo’s best friend describe him as person who could travel the world with his signature singlet and waist pouch". His neighbours also remembered him as a filial son and a gentle person. He was also remembered as a friendly guy who helped "break the ice" among a group of peers at a teaching course.

Muhammad Daanish b Amran

Daanish was a camp instructor which was a lively and jovial person. He was also the guide for the school expedition of TKPS. It was believed that he had sacrificed himself in order to protect and save the pupils of TKPS. A fellow instructor recalled Daanish as a potential instructor who had the skills and ability to take care of the pupils. His nephews also describe him as a very helpful person and recalled that he was the guy who would prepare and cook the food if there was a barbeque party.


The mountain Guides

Valerian Joannes

The 27 year old guide was engaged and is going to get marry in November this year. His cousin, Felix said that “He’s so kind, so helpful, (he just) wants the Singapore children to be safe” during an interview with TODAYonline. Although he was killed on the earthquake, his father was proud of him as he died a hero. It was told that he tried his best to safe as many climbers as possible and “grabbed the harness of the students and tried to shield them from the falling rocks but the rope snapped”.

Tom Ricky Masarin

Tom Ricky was a staff of Mt Torq. A funeral service was also held for fellow mountain guide Tom Ricky Raymond Masarin in Kundasang on Monday (8th January); leaving behind his mom, siblings and fiancé . His friends and family describe Ricky as a “big gentle teddy bear, strong, silent, calm and collected, it takes a lot to frazzle him. He is the type of person whom you know you can count on”. A climber that was under Ricky’s guide the day before the tradegy, remembered “his professional, patience, and kindness”.

Joseph Solugin

Despite just joining to become a mountain guide 2 months ago, there is no doubt that Joseph is a brave and caring person. Joseph was last seen hugging two of the climber in order to shield them from the falling rocks. Unfortunately, three of them did not survive the disaster. Joseph promised his wife to be back home to celebrate their anniversary on 12th June and had a pair of son and daughter,

Robbie Sapinggi

The 30 year old mountain guide was got married last year but her wife had to return to England unexpectedly in September.His wife, Reena had flown back to Sabah with the intention to live here long term with their six month old son. She describe Robbie as a fun and loving person. Robbie urged other climbers to continue climb down the mountain while he waited for help by himself. Robbie who had sustain head injury did not make it down the mountain in time for proper medical attention and passed away due to a major blood loss.