Gene Chang 11:34
Eulogy by Gene Chang in the Memorial Service for Tony Dong Chen at Westin Bonaventure Hotel on March 21, 2015
Dear Sister Weining,
Dear members of Tony Dong Chen's family and friends,
Ladies and gentleman,
On behalf of Peking University Global Alumni Association and Peking University Alumni Association of Southern California, I would like to pay our tribute to Dong Chen, to share our deepest grief at losing such an outstanding PKU alumnus, and to celebrate the humble but extraordinary life of Brother Dong Chen.
I have known Brother Dong only for five years. I don't think that I can be included in his circle of close friends. I have to admit that my knowledge about him and his life is quite limited. However, starting from the first moment when I got to know him, I have been calling him Big Brother Dong, and I feel that we are very close and share a lot of principles and belief.
Dong is wise, decent and disciplined. He is a talented leader, a principle man and a trustworthy partner. He is calm but warmhearted. He is rational but artistic. He is a professional lawyer but also a real poet. He had so distinctive and admirable noble character, that on the first day when I met him, I had developed a strong emotional affiliation with him. I took him as my role model and called him my Big Brother from the bottom of my heart.
Indeed, Brother Dong was no very active in Peking University Alumni
Most of my interactions with Brother Dong happened not at PKU alumni association, but at Chinese CEO Organization. From 2012 to 2013, we both served on the board of the organization. He was Secretary General and I was his deputy in effective. In the 2013 board election, he gave up the opportunity to be reelected due to the diagnosis of his cancer. I took over his position as Secretary General. In the past year, I have learned how much commitment is needed to do this job well. It is a volunteer job but needs full time commitment. It takes many hours of work and sleepless nights to make a major event successful. The longer I did it the more admiration I had in Brother Dong. He was know as a perfectionist in the organization. He didn't allow any compromise on the quality of his work for any reason, even a tiny spelling error. This meant that he must have spent a lot more time on the job than I did. I was always wondering: how could he do it being a busy lawyer, a family man/father of 3 kids, a well-respected community leader and a productive poet at the same time. He must have been a superman! I can't help to suspect, that he burned himself out at such a young age because of his selfish-less devotion to his family, his work and his community!
There are a lot more that I want to share with you about Brother Dong, but I have to stop here. To pay my tribute to him, let me conclude my eulogy with the following words:
There are people who are alive but dead long time ago.
There are people who died but are still alive.
Death is not the end of life.
It is just a station in the journey of a great spirit.
For those who share their life with others and bring them love, hope and inspiration,
For those who make the life of others better with selfless devotion and dedication,
Life will be enduing with death,
And their spirit will live with us as long as we live on.
May God bless Brother Dong to rest peacefully in Heaven!
Thank you Gene for your eulogy on behalf of PKU alumni! Well said!