The Beijing Olympic flame concluded its relay tour in China's southeastern Fujian Province on Wednesday, with a donation for the earthquake-hit southwest China highlighting the relay as a love and harmonious journey.
The 7.8-magnitude quake has claimed more than 10 thousands people in eight affected provinces and municipalities in southwest China Monday afternoon when the torch relay was touring Longyan, the last stop in Fujian Province.
When hearing the news of the deadly earthquake, the 208 torch bearers relayed in Longyan's leg called for donations to the earthquake-hit area.
On the closing ceremony in Wednesday evening, all the 208 torch bearers, including athletes, local officials, workers, businessmen, teachers and students, donated for the earthquake-hit areas.
Li Xinyan, the fifth torch bearer in Longyan's relay, and also an entrepreneur of an engineering machinery enterprise in Fujian, contributed 5 millions yuan to help with those affected by the quake.
"As a torch bearer, I hope to pass on affection to the people in the earthquake-hit areas, and try to do something to help those affected by the disaster," said Li.
"The Olympic torch relay is not only to pass the the spirit of Olympics, but also to hand on love and harmony," said Zhang Xiangxiang, the first torch bearer in Quanzhou's relay.
There are quite a handful world medalists in the torch bearers, including Zheng Meizhu and Hou Yuzhu, members of the Chinese women's volleyball team entitled five world champions in succession in 1980s, Guo Yuehua, a world-famous table tennis player with eight successive world titles, Shi Zhiyong and Ji Xinpeng, the Olympic champions of weightlifting and badminton.
"When I hold up the torch , I felt I shoulder the responsibility of passing on the love and friendship to the world. The Olympic flame's journey is a harmonious journey," Zheng told reporters after finishing the first leg in Fuzhou's relay.
The last leg of the Olympic torch relay in Fujian Province ended at 17:17 p.m. local time.
During the three-day relay in Fujian Province, the torch traveled across four cities, including the capital city Fuzhou, Quanzhou, Xiamen and Longyan, amid the cheers and jubilance from the inhabitants.
Fujian is known as one of the famous hometowns of overseas Chinese and the major ancestral homes of Chinese Taipei compatriots of the Han nationality.
The torch relay, heading to Jiangxi Province in eastern China, will be wrapped up in Ruijin City in the province on Thursday.
(Xinhua News Agency May 14, 2008)