Friday, 12 April, 2024

A Tribute to Mr. Milan Kwee

We regret to inform members of the passing of Mr. Milan Kwee on 9th March 2021.  Mr. Milan Kwee has led a full and rich life, and has built a legacy that is now enjoyed by the generations beyond his time. The Federation extends our deepest condolences to Mr. Kwee’s wife, Renee, his children – Gene and Dawn, and their family.

Pioneer Athlete of Singapore Taekwondo

The first Singapore Taekwondo Team reached the global stage in the 1973 World Championships held in Seoul, Korea. Mr. Milan Kwee was a member of that pioneer team, representing Singapore. As an athlete, he brought glory to our little red dot by winning Gold and Silver medals in the first two Asian Taekwondo Championships. After retiring as an athlete, Mr. Milan Kwee served as a sports administrator, working tirelessly to develop the sport in Singapore.

President, Singapore Taekwondo Federation

Mr. Milan Kwee was the President of the Singapore Taekwondo Federation (STF) for two terms, with the second period from 2004 to 2018, serving two terms in office. Together with his fellow Board Members and Executive Team, he led the fraternity to greater heights. The National Team, under his leadership, achieved their best medal tally in the 2015 South-east Asian Games (SEA Games) since 1995.

Championing Sports

Apart from his work with Taekwondo, Mr Milan Kwee was also the Vice-President of the Singapore National Olympic Council (SNOC), where he supported sports development and championed the national sport agenda. He led Team Singapore as Chef de Mission at the 29th SEA Games held in Malaysia, where the team delivered its best-ever away Games hauling 57 Gold, 58 Silver and 73 Bronze medals.

Honorary Citizen, Seoul

For his efforts in distribution of Taekwondo widely, Mr. Milan Kwee was awarded the Seoul Honorary Citizenship by Seoul Mayor Won Soon Park in 2016. The Seoul Honorary Citizenship has been awarded since 1958 as a reward and for the friendly relations to non-Koreans who demonstrated their dedication to Seoul in various field and visitors from overseas such as head of countries, first ministers, and diplomatic delegates.

Touching Lives Globally

Since stepping down as President in 2018, Mr. Milan Kwee continued to selflessly contribute to the development of the sport with World Taekwondo, heading the Marketing Committee and served as a member of the Executive Council. Since then, he took an active role, supporting the efforts of World Taekwondo in a wide range of work including refugee support initiatives and advising the transformation of the Indian Taekwondo Federation.

Eulogy From Dr Choue Chung-won, President, World Taekwondo

A memorial altar has been set up at the World Taekwondo’s headquarters in Seoul to honour him.

Besides that, Dr Choue would also like to share a few words on our common loss.

“Milan was like a brother to me, and also to many of us in the global Taekwondo family. He was a very loyal friend to us and to World Taekwondo. He was always jovial and encouraged us to live happy lives. It didn’t matter who he spoke to or spent time with; those of us who knew him are honoured to have him as a friend. He will be sorely missed. We already miss him so much.”

Eulogy from Mr Ng Ser Miang, Vice President of the  International Olympic Committee (IOC) and Honorary Chairman of Kukkiwon

Mr Ng Ser Miang wrote on a personal tribute on his facebook account which he has given permission for STF to share on our website.

“Dear friend Milan Kwee, you had lived a life that is full and rich and with a beautiful family you deeply love. Friends from around the world who are sadden by your passing will also celebrate your life and cherished the many great memories. We will remember your passion and dedications and the many contribution to sports and society as Vice President of Singapore National Olympic Council, former President of Singapore Taekwondo Federation and senior member of World Taekowndo leadership. I recall how proud you were traveling the world supporting the efforts of World Taekwondo in different work from supporting refugees to the latest assignment of advising the transformation of the Indian Taekwondo Federation. To me, you were my dive master who introduce me to the joy of diving and opened my eyes to a beautiful world under the sea. We had many unforgetble dive trips on Magic Dragon with Renee, your lovely wife and your pillar of strength. Renee, my dive buddy gave me confidence and helped me to explore the secrets of the depth. To my children when they were small, you were “uncle shell” who brought them beautiful shells from your dives. We will miss the tea, coffee and makan together and the national sports associations will miss the leader who started the chat group to support one another and drive the our national sport agenda. Rest in peace my friend.”

Eulogy from Mr Manuel Monsour del Rosario III, President, ASEAN Taekwondo Federation

It is with deepest sympathies that I offer my condolences on the passing of a dear friend and sports leader, Mr. Milan Kwee.

He was a true gentleman and a sports official who had dedicated  much of his life in the pursuit of excellence in sports and administration. Truly, he has done so much in the propagation of Taekwondo and I will never forget his wisdom and words of encouragement to those who had been around him, including myself.

On behalf of the ASEAN Taekwondo Federation, I offer our condolences and prayers to  the bereaved family and let us remember the memories and times spent with him. May his soul rest in peace.

Eulogy from Mr Kris Wiluan, Patron of Singapore Taekwondo Federation and Chairman, Asian Taekwondo Federation

Yesterday, on 9th March, we lost one of Taekwondo’s most outstanding leader. There will be many accolades for Milan’s contribution to the sport and for Singapore Taekwondo Federation, which under his leadership, has become an example for sports associations to emulate not only in Singapore but worldwide.

World Taekwondo pays respects to Milan with a memorial altar set up at the World Federation’s headquarters in Seoul. This is indeed a rare and special tribute.

Despite his importance and prominence in Singapore  Sports and in World Taekwondo, Milan remain humble , very friendly and approachable.

I met Milan many years ago when he came back to helm Singapore Taekwondo. We both have great dedication for Taekwondo which at that time was not an Olympic Sport and we have a common vision for Taekwondo to be accepted as an Olympic Sport and to support the effort of Asian Taekwondo Federation to form close cooperation and friendship between all the Taekwondo National federations in Asean, with the common objective to enhance the sport and to attain a medal in the Olympics which was later achieved by Thailand and Vietnam.

Asean Taekwondo Federation have lost not only an important leader, but also a beloved brother, friend and  mentor. Rest in peace my brother, thank you for all your dedication to our sport, thank you for the memorable time we work together in making Taekwondo a premier sport.

Rest in Peace and may our Lord receive you by his side.

Eulogy from Mr Lioe Nam Khiong, Patron of Singapore Taekwondo Federation

I, Lioe Nam Khiong, on behalf of the big family of Universal Taekwondo Indonesia Foundation (Yayasan Universal Taekwondo Indonesia) and Universal Taekwondo Indonesia Professional (UTI Pro) extend our most heartfelt condolences on the passing of our dear friend and colleague Mr. Milan Kwee. Our best prayers and thoughts are with his family and loved ones in this period of mourning.

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