IPOH - The three fishermen were good buddies from the same village, who shared the same surname and decided to go on the same holiday on the same bus. Tragically, they met the same fate and lost their lives on the same day.
Family and friends yesterday gathered to bid farewell to the trio who were killed in a bus accident along the North-South Expressway in Tapah.
Tan Ah Ban @ Tan Chan Ming, 69, Tan Ah Baa, 64, and Tan Ah Ba, 65, were given a sent-off in Kuala Gula.
They were among the eight who were killed in Thursday's incident.
The bus, which was on its way from Kerian in Perak to Genting Highlands, hit a fallen wheel on the road causing the driver to lose control of the vehicle.
The bus collided with a car before it overturned and burst into flames.
While 21 others were injured, two passengers managed to escape unhurt.
Ah Baa's eldest son Ewe Hor, 38, said his father seldom went on holidays.
"This time, he just wanted to join his friends for a fun trip," Ewe Hor said. "It was fated that all of them should pass away together," he said, adding that the friends lived just 100m apart.
Tan Xiang Shen, 21, said his grandfather Ah Ban would always enquire when he would get married.
"I make it a point to visit him every time I come back from work in Singapore," he said at the funeral. "Now he is gone, even before he could participate in my wedding ceremony."
The three friends were laid to rest close to each other at the Prestavest Memorial Park in Taiping, about a 45-minute drive from their village.
Dressed in the conventional Chinese funeral attire of black and white, their family members were visibly sombre with tear-stained faces and puffy eyes.
They knelt down holding a single incense stick as simple Taoist burial rites were carried out by a monk.
The other bus victims, Ong Ah Yook, 58, Aw Ah Poh, 56, Sim Ah Guat, 54, and Lim Soo Lan, 59, were cremated at the same park yesterday.