The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) government on Wednesday held an exceptionally high-level funeral for the first health care worker killed in the fight against SARS.
HKSAR Chief Executive Tung Chee Hwa attended Lau Wing Kai's funeral together with other government officials. Lau passed away on April 26.
Over 200 fresh-flower wreaths were placed inside and outside the funeral hall. Lau's confine was covered with Special Administrative Region's flag and his body will be buried in Gallant Garden, a resting place for public servants.
Chairman of Hospital Authority, Leong Che Hung said at the ceremony on Wednesday that as a doctor, he often sees birth and death, but never feels so grieved when hearing the news of Lau Wing Kai's death.
He said Hong Kong lost a hero who braved his own life in rescuing SARS patients and his selfless devotion set a model for all health care workers here.
One of Lau's colleagues at Tuen Mun Hospital said at the ceremony that Hong Kong will never forget the hero who devoted his life while on duty and "we will carry on his spirit and fight to an end of the battle against SARS."
Health care workers have been regarded as heroes in Hong Kong since the outbreak of SARS in mid-March. So far, a total of 368 health workers have had SARS.
On this Wednesday, the Department of Health and Hospital Authority reported eight new SARS cases and none of them are health care workers. In the past few days, the daily infected cases all involved with health care workers.
(People’s Daily May 8, 2003)