SINGAPORE - Homegrown actor Aloysius Pang's fans, friends and manager Dasmond Koh have all taken to social media to voice their concern over the news that he had been seriously injured during an overseas military exercise in New Zealand on Saturday (Jan 19).
Koh, 46, a television host who is also the head of NoonTalk Media, the agency that Pang is signed to, wrote on Instagram in Chinese on Sunday (Jan 20) morning: "To be honest, I'm feeling at a loss, and also a lot of heartache. Everything will be all right... I am unable to respond to everyone's text messages and telephone calls, please forgive me."
The post was followed by several messages of encouragement from other local celebrities such as Romeo Tan and Shaun Chen, who said that Pang "will be fine".
NoonTalk Media had earlier confirmed on Facebook that Pang was seriously injured during an overseas military exercise in New Zealand and that his mother is on her way there.
Pang's close friend and former actor colleague Xu Bin, 29, also wrote on Instagram in Chinese: "I received bad news early in the morning. I hope you'll be fine, and that you will return (home) safely."
Other netizens, such as an Instagram user who goes by the handle @sonebuddyx3, wrote: "Rest well, and get well soon. Will pray for you."
In a statement on Sunday (Jan 20), the Ministry of Defence said that Corporal First Class (NS) Pang Wei Chong, 28, was injured while repairing a Singapore Self-Propelled Howitzer at around 2.05pm Singapore time.
CFC (NS) Pang, an armament technician from the Singapore Armed Forces' (SAF) 268th Battalion Singapore Artillery, had been taking part in Exercise Thunder Warrior at the Waiouru training area in New Zealand, Mindef said.
He was transferred to the battalion casualty station at 2.25pm, where he was assessed and stabilised by a medical officer for about 25 minutes before being evacuated to Waiouru Camp Medical Centre for further treatment.
A helicopter arrived at 4.10pm and CFC (NS) Pang was evacuated, conscious, to Waikato hospital in Hamilton, in the northern part of the country. He arrived at the hospital at 6pm, Mindef said.
He then went through surgery which was completed at 11.40pm, and is now being monitored in the high dependency unit.
"The Ministry of Defence and the SAF are assisting CFC (NS) Pang's family during this period," Mindef said.
This article was first published in The Straits Times. Permission required for reproduction.