Loke Yew: A Malayan Pioneer
What were you doing at 13?
For Loke Yew, instead of attending school like most of us did, he was dealt with a very different set of cards. His arduous journey began when he sailed from China to Singapore at age 13 in 1858, penniless and barely literate.
Today, he is remembered by roads named after him in Singapore and Malaysia, including Loke Yew Street connecting Hill Street and Armenian Street, the Loke Yew scholarship and Loke Yew Hall in The University of Hong Kong, a ward in Tan Tock Seng Hospital that is named after him, and a bronze statue at his family mausoleum in Kuala Lumpur.
Nelson Mandela once said, “Do not judge me by my successes, judge me by how many times I fell down and got back up again.” Loke Yew is the exact personification of this quote. His rags to riches story is certainly not free from rough waves.
Loke Yew A Malayan Pioneer by Neil Khor charts Loke Yew’s poignant journey towards success, but more strikingly, his rise above numerous setbacks so far beyond our own experience, and his honorable philanthropic efforts in education and healthcare.
More than a century after Loke Yew’s demise, with little written about him, this memoir’s meticulous account, written with great honesty and clarity is far more astonishing than any first impression may allow. Even if you read with knowledge of his life, this book will show you that there are more to learn about him.
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