Friday, February 6, 2009

Farewell Markus!

I was alerted to a post by delCapo saying that Markus Ng, a vigil attendee that was seen in Sunday vigils was found dead all of the sudden.

When I saw the picture of Markus then I realized who he was exactly.

Back somewhere in November or December, a young man, perhaps younger than myself went to me and introduced himself as Markus. I shook his hand in reply and introduced myself. I remembered of both of us joining the usual gang in having our weekly drinks at Fisherman's Wharf.

Sadly we didn't get to know each other well as what Duke said the other day.

It was a shock though. And when I read an interesting post on the memorial page I came to realize how close was I to facing that similar situation.
Markus started working with UNICEF in November 2008. He had been working almost non-stop in the past week, sleeping only 3-4 hours a day. He came back from the office at 3am the night before his death and was found dead on his bed the next morning. His computer was still switched on. Obviously he had continued working even after coming home.

After much discussion with doctors, our theory is that his acute stress could have caused some biochemical (electrolyte) imbalance which triggered a cardiac arrythmia (sudden disarray of heart rhythm) and cardiac arrest. The whole thing is at the biochemical level and therefore, there are no organ changes to be detected at post-mortem.
I realized that there has been a lack of control over employee welfare by employers and Human Resources Ministry and I felt that this was the toll of working too hard. I will blog on this matter some other time.

Unfortunately, due to unusual circumstances, I am unable to go to the wake but instead I will say a little prayer to this young man who deserves to live longer but his life being robbed short. I remembered a saying that a slave is truly free when he dies as he feels the pains and slavery.

Farewell, and rest in peace pal!


  1. Dear Melvin, thank you for your kind thoughts on Markus. Nevertheless, I wish to point out that it would not be fair to contribute Markus's death to being over-worked by the employee. Markus is involved in many activities and is obviously exhausted physically. The cause of death is still not known. However, we are proud that Markus's death is not in vain and we believe his life and conduct has inspired many to be a better person, a better society and an Anak Bangsa Malaysia.

    Markus's Mum

  2. Dear Melvin, thank you for your note on Markus. However, I wish to clarify that it would not be fair to atttribute Markus's death to being overworked at UNICEF. The note was written to a relative and reproduced on the web. Markus's involved in many activities and is passionate on each. He had overstretched his limit in the process. The cause of death is still not known although we think it could be a cardiac cause. We hope all readers would take note of my clarification above.


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