|Maj Patrick Wong Sing Nang (Rtd) and En Azzam Syafiq
Malaysian Digest Interview Maj Patrick Wong Sing Nang (Rtd)
4 Oct 17
En Azzam Syafiq from Malaysian Digest interviewed Maj Patrick Wong Sing Nang (Rtd) recently about his services and sacrifices to the nation while serving in the Malaysian Armed Forces. The meeting took place up at D'Mass Restaurant, Taman Melawati, Kuala Lumpur on the noon of 27 August 2017. MACVA would like to express its sincere gratitude to Malaysian Digest for highlighting the sacrifices of Malaysian Armed Forces Chinese Veterans (MACV) for the nation while serving in the Malaysian Armed Forces.
54 Years After The Formation Of M'sia, An Army Veteran Tells Youth To Not Take Peace For Granted
Malaysian Digest Article
Published on Monday, 18 September 2017 16:43 Written by Azzam Syafiq
|Major Patrick (most right, holding the sword) leading his men in march during his RMC days
It has been 54 years since the formation of our beloved country, and we have stood through so many conflicts that challenged the sovereignty of our nation.
From the Indonesian Confrontation in the early days of Malaysia, to the 2013 Lahad Datu invasion by radical Filipino militants, our security forces have risked their lives for the safety of the Malaysian people.
One army veteran, Major Patrick Wong Sing Nang of the Malaysian Chinese Armed Forces Veteran (MACVA), shared with Malaysian Digest the sacrifices he had endured during his 26-year service in the Malaysian military.
“During the early days of Malaysia, when I was a teenager, I saw a lot of Commonwealth forces in my hometown. I was impressed by the foreign soldiers,” said the army veteran who hailed from Sibu, Sarawak.
When he was in Form 5, a recruiting team from the Ministry of Defence came to his hometown and gave a talk on military service as a career choice. Major Patrick wasted no time and made an application to join the army in 1967.
After spending two years in the Royal Military College (RMC), he was assigned to the third battalion of the ranger corps, stationed in Taiping for his first assignment.
|Major Patrick Wong Sing Nang
“At the time, Taiping was considered to be the hottest spot for communist threats in Perak and Kedah,” he recalled.
Throughout his experience in fighting the communists, there were two operations that stood out.
“In April 1971, my team mounted an operation called Ops Radak in Kulim. We managed to eliminate seven communist threats (CT), one of my biggest successes.
“However, due to the operation, I had to miss my own wedding dinner,” he said. He was officially married a few days before, but had to sacrifice his memorable wedding dinner to answer his duty for the country.
His other operation in December 1977 was even more unfortunate, as he had to be away from his family during Christmas. On top of that, he had a close encounter with death when fighting the communists.
“I was supposed to have my leave that time. However, due to the solid information provided by the Special Branch and Orang Asli, it was an urgent matter and my leave was cancelled.
“This operation, dubbed Ops Kejut, was planned to attack a communist outpost deep in the jungles of Gopeng.
“We entered the jungle in the night of Christmas, and carried our offensive in the early morning of 26 December, at 5.00 a.m.,” explained Major Patrick.
He was one of the 80 soldiers who participated in the operation. While that may sounds like a lot of soldiers, in the thick of the tropical Malaysian rainforest, the number had no obvious advantage as the thick vegetation limited the soldiers’ visibility.
“We carefully advanced to the enemy’s position. Unfortunately, one of our soldiers stepped on a trip mine, exploding it and exposing our position to the enemy,” he recalled.
The ensuing firefight lasted for three hours. While Major Patrick and his men successfully overrun the enemy’s position, it came with a heavy cost.
Four men, including Major Patrick, were severely injured. The Major was shot in the chest, and the bullet went past his lungs, liver and stuck in his abdomen. The soldier who stepped on the mine was heavily injured as well, from the explosion.
“We immediately radioed in for a helicopter evacuation, and established a ‘winching point’, an area where we cleared the trees around it to provide room for the helicopter to land.
“At 10.00 a.m., the helicopter arrived just in the nick of time to airlift the four of us. We were flown and treated at the Ipoh General Hospital,” he said.
After being treated for 30 days, he continued his service until he was voluntarily discharged in 1993.
He would like the current generations to know that the peace they enjoy today is due to the sacrifices made by soldiers just like him.
“Thanks to the cooperation shown by the police, army, navy, air force, and even the paramilitary, we managed to force the communists to the negotiating table in Hatyai at 1989, signing the peace accord and ending the communist threat.
“We must not take our peace today for granted. All of us must value and appreciate the sacrifices that had been made by our security personnel,” reminded the army veteran.
|Major Patrick (left) receiving a visit from his superior during his treatment in Ipoh General Hospital
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