Monday, April 21, 2008


Sandakan man who helped Australian soldiers in war honoured


A 93-year- man from Sandakan was yesterday awarded a medal by the National War Veteran Association of Australia for helping the Australian soldiers during World War Two in 1945. Henry Chang Ting Kiang, one of the 40 civilians from Sabah involved in the underground movement at the age of 28, had helped the Australian soldiers a lot during the world war by finding information about the Japanese soldiers, helping in getting medicine and food as well as also transmitting information to the Australian allies. Henry is among three out of the 40 civilians who are still alive. The appreciation medal was given by Ryan Rowland from Perth, Australia on behalf of the War Veteran Association of Australia at the residence of Laura Chang who is Henry’s niece at Taman Lumaku, Jalan Kolam here. Also present during the memorable ceremony were Henry’s wife Josephine Low, 86, their daughter Bettty Guntas, grandchildren Mansana Guntas and Patrick Chang and nieces - Terressa Regis and Christine Chua. Ryan was accompanied by Joe McLauc Tkin, two students from Perth Ami Leigh and Kyven and Sandakan Girl Guide Association’s representatives Penny Liew Ling Pei and Sapphira Rachel. “We are very pleased and honoured to be here. 1 always said it is never too late and we are here,” Ryan said. According to Ryan, the medal is au honour for all the veterans who were active and risked their life during the war. Asked how he felt after receiving the medal, Henry said he never expected to be given such a big honour. “I am so happy and I really appreciate it,” he said with a smile. According to Terressa, her uncle (Henry) was caught by the Japanese and kept for three months in Sandakan before sending him to Kuching for two years as a prisoner of war.