Heah Hock Heng passed away on 20 October, 10 days short of his 64 birthday. I first met Heah, in the 80’s, when I just joined the Malaysian Nature Society (MNS). He needed volunteers to help do a painting job at the MNS field centre in Cameron Highlands.
Apart from working as a painter I also ended up cutting chillies and onions etc. in the kitchen. Heah was both the project manager as well as the chef at that time. He was already renown then for his work in the field .
My painting was not up to standard and neither was my cutting skills. But that was the beginning of my long friendship with Heah and later with his wife Cheong Ann and some friends from the MNS days.
Heah (standing in the far right) making sure that the lunch for the party was in order, 2007, at KLPac.
Two years ago, I asked Heah and his friends to help cook a lunch for 100 persons. This was a party for a mixed disability group of friends at the KLPac. It was to celebrate the exhibition of photographs of the disabled athletes, which I had done.
Heah was one person who was always willing to help, when he can, no matter what it may be. He also had a distinguished career as a project manager for forest and environment related projects in Malaysia.
Heah with all his friends helping out at the KLPac lunch for the disabled friends, 2007.
But most of all, Heah will be remembered as a chef, for feeding thousands of MUS members ‘5 start hotel food’ deep in the Malaysian mountains.
Heah’s funeral will be on Saturday 24 October, 2pm, Trinity Methodist Church, Petaling Jaya.