S'pore's Thai community mourn loss of King

Buddhist Prayers at Wat Ananda Metyarama temple in bukit Merah for the passing of Thai King.
PHOTO: The Straits Times

The popular Thai hangout in Singapore, Golden Mile Complex, was unusually quiet yesterday as the Thai community here mourned the loss of King Bhumibol Adulyadej.

Some stores opened late, while others shut their doors early as Thai shopkeepers and customers alike congregated at the Thai Embassy in Orchard Road to pay their respects.

"Today is very quiet. A lot of people are sad and are at home," said shopkeeper Isaree Harnmontree, 41.

The Thai national had opened her coffee shop an hour later than usual as a mark of respect for the monarch. Over the weekend, she hopes to visit the embassy to pray for the King. "I think he had a strong and good heart. He would do anything for the Thai people," she said, fighting back tears.

PM Lee pays last respects to late Thai King in Bangkok

  • President Tony Tan Keng Yam paid his respects to Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej yesterday in the Grand Palace in Bangkok.
  • Dr Tan, who was accompanied by his wife Mary, as well as officials from Singapore's Foreign Affairs Ministry, laid a wreath by the late monarch's royal urn and signed a condolence book.
  • His visit came three days after Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong travelled to Bangkok to do the same.
  • "King Bhumibol was also a close friend of many countries, including Singapore. Under his long reign, the bilateral relations between Singapore and Thailand strengthened significantly," wrote Dr Tan.
  • Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and his wife Ho Ching have paid their last respects to the late King of Thailand Bhumibol Adulyade at the Grand Palace in Bangkok.
  • The Singapore leader laid a wreath at the Royal Urn in the Dusit Maha Prasat Throne Hall and also signed the book of condolences on Oct 21.
  • A scheduled meeting between Prime Minister Lee and Thai Prime Minister General Prayut Chan-o-cha was cancelled due to last-minute scheduling difficulties, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said.
  • The prime minister had earlier paid his respects to King Bhumibol Adulyadej at the Thai Embassy in Singapore on Oct 14, a day after the 88-year-old died at a Bangkok hospital.
  • PM Lee Hsien Loong signs the condolence book at the Thai Embassy in Singapore, 14 Oct 2016.
  • People pay respect and sign condolence book for the late Thai king Bhumibol Adulyadej at the Thai embassy in Singapore on 15 October 2016 .
  • According to the embassy, a condolence book will be open for signing at its premises at 370 Orchard Road, from Monday to Friday, from 10am to 12.30pm and 2pm to 4.30pm.
  • Visitors can access the embassy via its Claymore Road entrance.
  • St Francis Methodhist School students offer prayers for the late Thai King Bhumibol Adulyadej at Wat Ananda Metyarama, the Thai Buddhist temple along Bukit Merah Rd.
  • This group of students were at the Royal Thai embassy this morning and were told that the embassy would only open at 4pm.
  • A group of close to 33 St Francis Methodhist School students wait outside the Royal Thai embassy on 14 Oct 2016. They were told to return at 4pm when the embassy would allow well-wishers in.
  • A student from St Francis Methodist stands outside the Royal Thai embassy gates on 14 Oct 2016.
  • (L-R) Stamp Promphan, 15, and Pirapat Chaiya,13, from St Francis Methodhist School outside the Royal Thai embassy on 14 Oct 2016.
  • St Francis Methodhist School students offer prayers for the late Thai King Bhumibol Adulyadej at Wat Ananda Metyarama, the Thai Buddhist temple along Bukit Merah Rd.
  • St Francis Methodhist School students offer prayers for the late Thai King Bhumibol Adulyadej at Wat Ananda Metyarama, the Thai Buddhist temple along Bukit Merah Rd.
  • St Francis Methodhist School students offer prayers for the late Thai King Bhumibol Adulyadej at Wat Ananda Metyarama, the Thai Buddhist temple along Bukit Merah Rd.
  • The Thai flag flies at half mast at the Royal Thai embassy in Jakarta on October 14, 2016.
  • The Thai flag flies at half mast at the Royal Thai embassy in Jakarta on October 14, 2016.
  • Ms Darunee sobbing after hearing of Thai King Bhumibol's death on Oct 13.
  • She had planned to go home next month but is flying back to Bangkok today to pay her respects.
  • Reaction of the Thai people at Golden Mile complex after the demise of Thailand King Bhumibol.
  • Reaction of the Thai people at Golden Mile complex after the demise of Thailand King Bhumibol.
  • Reaction of the Thai people at Golden Mile complex after the demise of Thailand King Bhumibol.
  • Reaction of the Thai people at Golden Mile complex after the demise of Thailand King Bhumibol.
  • Reaction of the Thai people at Golden Mile complex after the demise of Thailand King Bhumibol.
  • People react shortly after it was announced that Thailand's King Bhumibol Adulyadej died at the Siriraj hospital where he is residing in Bangkok, Thailand, October 13, 2016.
  • Thailand's King Bhumibol Adulyadej, who was the world's longest-reigning monarch, died in hospital on Thursday, the palace said in an announcement.
  • The palace did not give a reason for his death. He was 88 years old.
  • The king was credited with restoring the influence of Thailand's royalty during 70 years on the throne and earning the devotion of many of his subjects.
  • For the majority of the country's 68 million people, the king was a pillar of stability in rapidly changing times.
  • King Bhumibol, who ascended the throne on June 9, 1946, was seen as a force for unity, and there have long been concerns that the political tensions that have riven Thailand over the past decade could worsen after his death.
  • A well-wisher gestures in front of a picture of Thailand's King Bhumibol Adulyadej at Siriraj Hospital in Bangkok, Thailand, October 10, 2016.
  • Well-wishers hold portraits of Thailand's King Bhumibol Adulyadej at Siriraj Hospital in Bangkok, Thailand, October 10, 2016.
  • A well-wisher hold up a portrait of Thailand's King Bhumibol Adulyadej at Siriraj Hospital in Bangkok, Thailand, October 10, 2016.
  • Well-wishers wear pink shirts as they pray in front of a picture of Thailand's King Bhumibol Adulyadej at Siriraj Hospital in Bangkok, Thailand, October 11, 2016.
  • A well-wisher wears a pink shirt as she prays in front of a portrait of Thailand's King Bhumibol Adulyadej at Siriraj Hospital in Bangkok, Thailand, October 11, 2016.
  • A well-wisher prays for Thailand's King Bhumibol Adulyadej at the Siriraj hospital where he is residing in Bangkok, Thailand, October 12, 2016.
  • Well-wishers pray for Thailand's King Bhumibol Adulyadej at the Siriraj hospital where he is residing in Bangkok, Thailand, October 12, 2016.
  • Well-wishers hold pictures of Thailand's King Bhumibol Adulyadej as they pray for him at the Siriraj hospital where he is residing in Bangkok, Thailand, October 12, 2016.
  • Well-wishers hold pictures of Thailand's King Bhumibol Adulyadej as they pray for him at the Siriraj hospital where he is residing in Bangkok, Thailand, October 12, 2016.
  • A well-wisher holds a picture of Thailand's King Bhumibol Adulyadej at the Siriraj hospital where he is residing in Bangkok, Thailand, October 12, 2016.
  • A well-wisher holds a picture of Thailand's King Bhumibol Adulyadej as she prays for him at the Siriraj hospital where he is residing in Bangkok, Thailand, October 12, 2016.
  • Well-wishers hold pictures of Thailand's King Bhumibol Adulyadej as they pray for him at the Siriraj hospital where he is residing in Bangkok, Thailand, October 12, 2016.
  • Well-wishers hold pictures of Thailand's King Bhumibol Adulyadej as they pray for him at the Siriraj hospital where he is residing in Bangkok, Thailand October 12, 2016.
  • Well-wishers hold portraits of Thailand's King Bhumibol Adulyadej at Siriraj Hospital in Bangkok, Thailand, October 11, 2016.
  • A well-wisher holds portraits of Thailand's King Bhumibol Adulyadej at Siriraj Hospital in Bangkok, Thailand, October 11, 2016.
  • A well-wisher prays for Thailand's King Bhumibol Adulyadej at the Siriraj hospital where he is residing in Bangkok, Thailand October 12, 2016.
  • Well-wishers pray for Thailand's King Bhumibol Adulyadej at the Siriraj hospital where he is residing in Bangkok, Thailand October 12, 2016.
  • A well-wisher weeps as she prays for Thailand's King Bhumibol Adulyadej at the Siriraj hospital where he is residing in Bangkok, Thailand October 12, 2016.
  • A well-wisher prays for Thailand's King Bhumibol Adulyadej at the Siriraj hospital where he is residing in Bangkok, Thailand October 12, 2016.
  • Well-wishers pray for Thailand's King Bhumibol Adulyadej at the Siriraj hospital where he is residing in Bangkok, Thailand October 12, 2016.
  • A well-wisher prays for Thailand's King Bhumibol Adulyadej at the Siriraj hospital where he is residing in Bangkok, Thailand October 12, 2016.

The world's longest-reigning monarch died on Thursday at the age of 88, following a long period of ill health. Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha has declared a year-long period of mourning.

At the Thai Embassy, the Thai flag was at half-mast.

According to the embassy, a condolence book will be open for signing at its premises at 370 Orchard Road, from Monday to Friday, from 10am to 12.30pm and 2pm to 4.30pm. Visitors can access the embassy via its Claymore Road entrance.

Yesterday, at least one school, St Francis Methodist School in Upper Bukit Timah Road, gave its Thai students the day off to pay their respects to the late King, and around 30 of them turned up at the embassy. Principal Lenie Cho said the decision was made out of compassion for the students.

"We came here to pray for the King," said student Stamp Promphan, 15.

"Almost all of us were crying when we woke up to the news this morning. He was a very important person, like our second dad. I've never met him, but he's like one of our family members. I grew up knowing only him as King."

But the students could not enter the embassy as the condolence book had not been set up. So they took a train to Wat Ananda Metyarama - a Thai Buddhist temple in Jalan Bukit Merah - to pray for the King.

Venerable Chao Khun Tepsiddhivides, the temple's head monk, said it will hold five days of chanting for the King, and everyone is welcome to join in. A tent has been set up, with a photo of King.

Large crowds gather as convoy transports Thai king's body to Grand Palace

  • Thailand's Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn looks out from a van as a motorcade transports the body of Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej from the Bangkok hospital to the Grand Palace in Bangkok.
  • The procession of vehicles moves through the city as massive crowds line the streets.
  • People display portraits of Thailand's King Bhumibol Adulyadej on Thai baht notes as they wait on the roadside.
  • People offer condolences for Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej at the Grand Palace in Bangkok, Thailand, October 14, 2016.
  • People offer condolences for Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej at the Grand Palace in Bangkok, Thailand, October 14, 2016.
  • People offer condolences for Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej at the Grand Palace in Bangkok, Thailand, October 14, 2016.
  • People offer condolences for Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej at the Grand Palace in Bangkok, Thailand, October 14, 2016.
  • People offer condolences for Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej at the Grand Palace in Bangkok, Thailand, October 14, 2016.
  • People offer condolences for Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej at the Grand Palace in Bangkok, Thailand, October 14, 2016.
  • People offer condolences for Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej at the Grand Palace in Bangkok, Thailand, October 14, 2016.
  • People offer condolences for Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej at the Grand Palace in Bangkok, Thailand, October 14, 2016.
  • People offer condolences for Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej at the Grand Palace in Bangkok, Thailand, October 14, 2016.
  • People offer condolences for Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej at the Grand Palace in Bangkok, Thailand, October 14, 2016.
  • People queue to pay respects to the late Thai King Bhumibol Adulyadej at the Grand Palace in Bangkok on October 14, 2016. Bhumibol, the world's longest-reigning monarch, passed away at 88 on October 13 after years of ill health, removing a stabilising father figure from a country where political tensions remain raw two years after a military coup.
  • Mourners arrive to the Grand Palace to pay respect to Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej in Bangkok, Thailand October 14, 2016.
  • Former Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra arrives at the Grand Palace to offer condolences for Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej, in Bangkok, Thailand, October 14, 2016.
  • Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-O-Cha arrives to pay respects to the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej at the Grand Palace in Bangkok on October 14, 2016. Bhumibol, the world's longest-reigning monarch, passed away at 88 on October 13 after years of ill health, removing a stabilising father figure from a country where political tensions remain raw two years after a military coup.
  • Thailand's Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha (L) and his wife Naraporn (R) pay respect after offering condolences for Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej at the Grand Palace in Bangkok, Thailand, October 14, 2016.
  • Thai Royal guards march as mourners line up to enter the Grand Palace to pay respect to Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej in Bangkok, Thailand, October 14, 2016.
  • Thai Royal guards march as mourners line up to enter the Grand Palace to pay respect to Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej in Bangkok, Thailand, October 14, 2016.
  • Thai Royal guards march as mourners line up to enter the Grand Palace to pay respect to Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej in Bangkok, Thailand, October 14, 2016.
  • Thai Royal guards march as mourners line up to enter the Grand Palace to pay respect to Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej in Bangkok, Thailand, October 14, 2016.
  • Thai Royal guards march as mourners line up to enter the Grand Palace to pay respect to Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej in Bangkok, Thailand, October 14, 2016.
  • People stand in lines to offer condolences for Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej at the Grand Palace in Bangkok, Thailand, October 14, 2016.
  • People stand in lines to offer condolences for Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej at the Grand Palace in Bangkok, Thailand, October 14, 2016.
  • Mourners line up to enter the Grand Palace to pay respect to Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej in Bangkok, Thailand October 14, 2016.
  • Mourners line up to enter the Grand Palace to pay respect to Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej in Bangkok, Thailand October 14, 2016.
  • A woman weeps as she stands in line with others to offer condolences for Thailand's King Bhumibol Adulyadej at the Grand Palace in Bangkok
  • A woman holds a garland as she stands in line with others to offer condolences for Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej at the Grand Palace in Bangkok, Thailand, October 14, 2016.
  • Mourners line up to enter to the Grand Palace to pay respect to Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej in Bangkok, Thailand October 14, 2016.
  • Mourners line up to enter to the Grand Palace to pay respect to Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej in Bangkok, Thailand October 14, 2016.
  • Mourners line up to enter to the Grand Palace to pay respect to Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej in Bangkok, Thailand October 14, 2016.
  • Mourners line up to enter to the Grand Palace to pay respect to Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej in Bangkok, Thailand October 14, 2016.
  • Mourners line up to enter to the Grand Palace to pay respect to Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej in Bangkok, Thailand October 14, 2016.
  • A man holds a photo of Thai King Bhumibol Adulyadej as he waits in a queue to pay his respects at the Grand Palace in Bangkok on October 14, 2016. King Bhumibol Adulyadej, long a unifying figure in politically fractious Thailand, died on October 13 and uncertainty over the succession quickly arose as his crown prince reportedly sought a delay in taking over.
  • A man holds a photo of Thai King Bhumibol Adulyadej as he waits in a queue to pay his respects at the Grand Palace in Bangkok on October 14, 2016. King Bhumibol Adulyadej, long a unifying figure in politically fractious Thailand, died on October 13 and uncertainty over the succession quickly arose as his crown prince reportedly sought a delay in taking over.
  • A man holds a photo of Thai King Bhumibol Adulyadej as he waits in a queue to pay his respects at the Grand Palace in Bangkok on October 14, 2016. King Bhumibol Adulyadej, long a unifying figure in politically fractious Thailand, died on October 13 and uncertainty over the succession quickly arose as his crown prince reportedly sought a delay in taking over.
  • Mourners line up to enter the Grand Palace to pay respect to Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej in Bangkok, Thailand October 14, 2016.
  • A woman holds an image of Thai King Bhumibol Adulyadej as she waits in a queue to pay her respects at the Grand Palace in Bangkok on October 14, 2016. King Bhumibol Adulyadej, long a unifying figure in politically fractious Thailand, died on October 13 and uncertainty over the succession quickly arose as his crown prince reportedly sought a delay in taking over.
  • Mourners walk to the Grand Palace to wait for the hearse, following the passing of King Bhumibol Adulyadej in Bangkok, Thailand October 14, 2016.
  • Mourners walk to the Grand Palace to wait for the hearse, following the passing of King Bhumibol Adulyadej in Bangkok, Thailand October 14, 2016.
  • People mourning for the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej wait along a procession route near the Grand Palace in Bangkok, Thailand October 14, 2016.
  • A Buddhist monk joins mourners at the Grand Palace to pay respect to Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej in Bangkok, Thailand, October 14, 2016.
  • People wait in line to pay their respects to Thai King Bhumibol Adulyadej at the Grand Palace in Bangkok on October 14, 2016. King Bhumibol Adulyadej, long a unifying figure in politically fractious Thailand, died on October 13 and uncertainty over the succession quickly arose as his crown prince reportedly sought a delay in taking over.
  • Mourners sit in a coffee shop in front of the Grand Palace decorated with paintings of Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej in Bangkok, Thailand October 14, 2016.
  • People mourning for the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej wait along a procession route near the Grand Palace in Bangkok, Thailand October 14, 2016.
  • Crowd near the Grand Palace in Bangkok, Oct 14, 2016.
  • Mourners arrive to the Grand Palace to pay respect to Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej in Bangkok, Thailand October 14, 2016.

Sessions will be from 7pm to 8pm, and all Thai monks in Singapore, numbering about 30, will be present.

Religious leaders from other faiths, such as Christianity, Hinduism and Islam, have been invited to join today's session.

Read also: Grieving Thailand salutes late king on his final journey


This article was first published on October 15, 2016.
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