S A Vanar (1951-2021)

Dear Vanar,

The news of your passing came as a shock, especially as Chinese New Year approached when we typically have our annual lunch meet with you. With the COVID-19 pandemic, we were just about to plan a Zoom meeting with you and a few of our fellow ex-colleagues… It is sad that we have lost a dear friend.

You were certainly a fearsome boss back in KPMG, with a quick temper and an utter intolerance for sloppy work. Your long list of queries gave juniors, seniors and managers alike, a “bad headache”! I must say, I much prefer you as an ex-boss and a friend than that of a boss. 😉

It was a privilege that the few of us from KPMG A5 (the department that was known back then in the 1990’s) were able to meet up with you in the past few years for our Chinese New Year lunch. We had a great time catching up with each other, enjoying your dry sense of humour. Despite your Sarcoidosis, you lugged the portable oxygen tank with ease, every now and then calmly breathing in and out after a laugh or from extended talking. You even drove yourself to our lunch meet last year although Mun Lan offered to pick you up! Reading about your solo holiday to New Zealand with your portable oxygen, clearly showed your tenacity and determination to live life to the fullest and the best we can despite our challenges – a principle in life which you left for us to emulate!

I’d like to thank you for your training during my KPMG days, though it was tough, you taught us how to be detailed and meticulous in our review and analysis, your personality & approach helped shape us to become mentally & emotionally stronger as well. 🙂 I now recall giving you a book titled, “Strength of Soul” upon leaving KPMG, a book about drawing strength from God in facing our daily challenges. Never got around to asking if you had the chance to read it.         

Your famous catch-phrases compiled by Anu certainly bring back many fond memories of the legendary Mr SA Vanar. We shall miss you, dear Vanar! May your soul rest in peace.   


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Goh Wei Ling (Ex-KPMG A5)

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