Last night, my Thai friends brought me this sad news. The King of Thailand, His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej, passed away at the age of 88 years old in Siriraj Hospital in Bangkok, Thailand. King Bhumibol had been ill for a long time and he had been in and out of hospital many times these past several years. But last night as a huge crowd gathered to pray for the King’s health outside of the hospital, the announcement was broadcasted to the heart-break of Thai people all over the kingdom. Having lived in Bangkok for some time, I understand how Thai people would react, as I know how they hold great admiration and love for this great King.
From hospitals to shopping malls, from offices to homes, you will find the pictures of King Bhumibol, highly respected all over the country. From watching movie in the cinema, walking in the park, or taking the BTS, we will come across the King’s Anthem being played and all people would stand still to pay respect for the King. Thai people woke up this morning with the news sinking in that after 70 years of reign, they are now without their revered father figure. It is a huge loss for Thai people indeeed and an extended mourning period has been announced. My deep condolences and sympathy for all my friends and people of Thailand. King Bhumibol will always be remembered and respected not only in Thailand but all over the world for his compassion and devotion to his people and his country.