Desmond Tam

Last week, a person from my choir passed away suddenly. There was a writeup about him in the papers. Here is a eulogy written by my choir conductor. I hope he nor you all will mind that I post this up:

Dear Friends,

It is with great sadness and loss that I am sending this email. As most of our members here in Singapore will know by now, Desmond Tam passed away last Friday. He suffered a massive heart attack after an evening jog with Andrina. We share in Andrina's sudden loss and grieve with her over this tragic passing. Desmond was the only child and his parent's loss must be very hard on them as well. He was only 29 years old.

I remember Desmond as always being a smiling and enthusiastic tenor, even willing to cantor whenever we were in need of one. Together with Andrina, they helped make 2002's Car Rally a great success with their manning of the games section at St Bernadette. As a member of Catholic High School's teaching staff pointed out during his funeral mass, Desmond was always willing and responsible. His passing will affect all of us, especially those of us who had the privilege of having him and Andrina join us at choir.

According to Andrina, Desmond had a profound love for singing and thoroughly enjoyed the songs that the choir sang. Genesis Choir had the greatest honour in being able to bid farewell to him by sining at his funeral mass which was well and truly attended. Even my dad remembers him from his days as President of the Young Vincentians, a off-shoot of the church's St Vincent de Paul Society. Representatives of the Cheshire Home were also present at his funeral, paying tribute to the man who had so often and so unselfishly helped to wheel the handicapped from Serangoon Gardens Way to church for mass during those hot and sweaty Sunday mornings.

We mourn Desmond's loss and it is my hope that we continue to support Andrina who has expressed her wish to rejoin the choir. She had fulfilled Desmond's wish by singing with us at his funeral mass.


Eternal rest grant onto Desmond O Lord and let perpertual light shine upon
him. May Desmond rest in peace, Amen.

Jerry Tan
One of the songs we sang during his funeral mass was the Prayer of St. Francis:

Lord, make me an instrument of Your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury, pardon;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light;
and where there is sadness, joy.
O, Divine Master,
grant that I may not so much seek
to be consoled as to console;
to be understood as to understand;
to be loved as to love;
for it is in giving that we receive;
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.
To me, it describes Desmond so much and is so apt. I never saw this prayer in this way before. So give thanks and treasure your days; the Lord has called a good man home.

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