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Sunday, January 23, 2011

The Passing Of An Xboss

Evening 21 January 2011...I was about to leave home for solat magrib at the surau when I received this 'forwarded' sms from a friend '...Maklumat diterima dari Mej Jen (B) Dato Malek . Brig Jen Dato  Stephen Ngiau Tai Kong passed away at Tuanku Mizan Hospital at 2.30 pm 2day. He was Tan Sri Saruji , Dato Suleiman & my FTS 7th Course mates. May his soul RIP> Panglima Tentera Udara isteri serta seluruh warga TUDM mengucapkan takziah di atas pemergian beliau.'
From left: Capt (A) Raja Mohamad, the late Maj (A) Stephen Ngiau, Maj (A) Jamaluddin, Lt Col (A) Richard Jalleh, Maj (A) Ooi Ah Bah (more photos here & here)

The late Brig Gen Stephen Ngiau RMAF (R) (Maj then) was the OC of  No 3 Squadron, RMAF Butterworth, when I reported for duty on 1 January 1978, the year when Ops Selamat Sawadee was launched. As far as I could remember, he was a 'Mini Cooper' (Alouette 111) pilot and that's the reason why I never had  an opportunity to fly with him. In fact, he was the second OC out of 6 OCs that I had served in the RMAF - 3 each from No 3 & 10 Sqns - that never flew with me (coincidentally, both of them were from No 3 Sqn).

One unforgettable trade mark of him was that he never missed combing his hair back into place once he took off his flying helmet...so impeccable and neatly groomed!  

As an OC, he never compromised his aircrew's safety. In one incident, I did not complete the task of resupply at the Klian Intan area after being shot with two rounds of M79  by the CTs. After inspecting the aircraft at Klian Intan and satisfied that there was no damage, I was tasked by BASO (Brigade Air Support Officer) stationed at Kroh,  to pick a casevac somewhere north of Kedah before RTB; the uncompleted task would be carried out the next day. Next morning, one Nuri took off to complete the resupply. When I briefed the OC of the incident and on being informed that the Nuri was flying to Klian Intan without knowing the security of the area, he immediately called Base Ops Room ordering the Nuri to return to Base. He wanted the troops on the ground to ensure the area was safe before any Nuri landed at the locations. If I remember correctly, the task was completed on the third day when the troops gave the green light that the area was safe.

My last encounter with the late Dato' was in the mid-90s when he was then the Director of Army Air Wing (Pengarah Pasukan Udara Tentera Darat).

Datin Cecilia...My condolences to you and family.

10 comments:

basri bin omar said...

salam Tuan!

Terima kasih paparan...my humble Condolence to the family! Juga pernah mengenali beliau semasa beliau mengetuai PUTD(aka PERASAN UDARA TAPI DARAT.....Maaf).Pejabat beliau waktu tu di dpn pejabat saya d Tkt 8,Wisma Pertahanan.

mangchikla said...

Sakit ape Tuan ?

Faizul said...

May his soul rest in peace.

Served together with the late Brig Gen Stephen Ngiau in the 70's in AOCEM Kuching.

Mej (B) Nor Ibrahim Bin Sulaiman said...

Saudara Semua,

Terima kasih. Menurut Lt Kol Frank Chong KL TUDM (B), mendiang Dato' Stephen meninggal disebabkan barah hati.

Anonymous said...

saya difahamkan isteri kanang pgb telah meninggal dunia 2 hari lepas kerana barah, betul ke?

taming said...

I know Brig Gen Dato Stephen Ngiau very well and it is sad to hear that he has left us. He is a good RMAF officer and pilot who contributed a lot to the RMAF, Malaysian Armed Forces and the country .
I join you guys to express our condolences to Datin Cecilia and Family.
May his soul rest in peace.

Tamingsari

Anonymous said...

Rest in Peace. Condolences to the family.

Mohd Ismail Bin Mohd Hashim said...

May he rest in peace and my deepest condolence to Datin and family...you must be tip top to fly with him.

Nota Fikir said...

Takziah kepada pejuang2 negara!
Berkorban tanpa mengenal takut dan tanpa memilih bulu...Jasa2mu tetap dikenang...

Anonymous said...

Takziah kepada Datin Cecelia and family atas pemergian Mendiang Dato' Stephen Ngiau, jasa beliau tidak dapat dilupakan didalam perkhidmatan especially TUDM & PUTD.