Home > News > Nation
Monday September 23, 2013 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Monday September 23, 2013 MYT 9:56:46 AM
KUALA LUMPUR: Veteran safety marshal Satish Suppiah’s friends draped a chequered flag lovingly over his casket while his eldest son Mark Sudesh cried, “Champion!” in a last tribute to his father before his body was cremated.
Mark’s sister, Melysha Sinodhini, 14, sobbed hysterically throughout the service and pleaded, “Open your eyes, appa”, as she got into the hearse with her family to accompany Satish’s body to the Cheras crematorium.
Many who attended his funeral were choked with tears during the Christian service as family and friends paid their final respects yesterday evening.
A superbike rider had collided into Satish, during the 12.30pm incident on Saturday at the Sepang International Circuit while he was waving a chequered flag to mark the end of the 250cc class practice session.
The 44-year-old, who worked as a bank clerk and was a volunteer safety marshal at numerous races over the years, succumbed to serious internal injuries and died surrounded by family and friends at Putrajaya Hospital on Saturday.
“I miss him so much. My father is my champion, he is my only hero,” said Mark numbly after the ceremony and vowed that he would do his best in life to make his father proud.
Satish’s father, Nathaniel Suppiah, said he did not blame the rider, Muhammad Izzat Mohd Abdul Hakim, for the tragedy despite his grief.
“There’s nothing to blame. Accidents can happen at any time and any place. We hope he recovers soon so he can tell us what happened,” he said, adding that it was important to move forward in life.
Mark, 20, and his brother Melvyn Shanesh, 15, had witnessed the tragedy as they too were safety marshals at SIC as they wanted to follow their father’s passion for motorsports.
Equally grief-stricken was one of his best friends, Arul Nadesan, 42, who had worked as a safety marshal with Satish for 10 years before moving into administration at SIC.
He was one of many who described Satish, who was the chief of some 60 pit and grid marshals, as a selfless, kind and humorous man who was quick to offer help and had a dedicated work ethic.
“I can’t accept the fact that he is gone. He isn’t just a friend, he is my brother. Everything in SIC reminds me of him, I won’t meet someone like him again in my life,” he said during the earlier service at Satish’s brother, Nelson Segaran’s house.
Another marshal, R. Vicknesh, 26, said he felt so blessed that Satish had been a mentor to him.
“Half an hour before the incident, we had made plans to celebrate my birthday. We are all one family at the circuit,” he said.
Jed David, 33, who worked with Satish for over 10 years as a volunteer track official, said he had all the qualities of a leader.
He said they communicated via radio, as he was in charge of time coordination and was stationed in the pit building.
“At the end of each session, he would radio me and say, ‘All bikes in pits, track clear’. It is very sad that I will never hear him say that again,” he said.
Superbiker recovering after surgery
Probe into why rider failed to see marshal on the track
Tags / Keywords:
Sport, sepang, satish suppiah
Copyright © 1995-2013 Star Publications (M) Bhd (Co No 10894-D)