Our family is profoundly saddened by the sudden passing of our beloved husband, father and grandfather, Dato Professor Choong Chin “C.C.” Liew, aged 81, at the Toronto General Hospital. He will be cherished and missed by: his loving wife Eng; children - Gailina (Doug), Allan (Dawn) and Victor; 7 grandchildren - Kaelan, Kyleigh, Kiera, Kendra, Evan, Alex, and Amelia; brother Jack Chor; and a global circle of dear family and friends.
C.C.’s remarkable life journey was driven by his passion for science and love of family, friendship and adventure. His visionary thinking and devotion to science took him from his birthplace in a tiny Malaysian village to pursuing studies in Singapore, Canada, the United States and England. After completing his PhD, marrying and settling in Toronto, Canada, he never forgot his roots and tirelessly forged collaborations between countries and established networks to bring Malaysian, Chinese, Canadian and American scientists together to share in knowledge and fellowship. His pioneering contributions to advancing knowledge in cardiovascular genomics and early disease detection through whole genome blood expression profiling continue to stand out amongst the most exciting achievements in those fields globally.
Family life with C.C. was never dull and we explored the world by accompanying him on his sabbaticals through England, China and Southeast Asia; we also travelled as 3 generations through Europe, Canada, the United States, Hawaii, Iceland, Malaysia, Singapore, Jersey, India and, just one month ago, through Portugal. Few understood his decision to buy a cottage that was more than a 2 hour drive away in 1976 but the cottage quickly became and continues to be a special gathering place for family and friends to enjoy and engage with each other in a beautiful natural environment. C.C. loved classical music and we enjoyed many evenings as a family and with friends as C.C. sang his favourite Chinese songs and played piano with his children.
Despite being challenged with multiple myeloma in recent years, C.C. continued to pursue his scientific interests at a blistering pace and live life with great passion and purpose. The family is very grateful to oncologist Dr. Donna Reece, family physician Dr. Gerald Chaban, and the staff of Princess Margaret Hospital and Toronto General Hospital for all they did to provide treatment, guidance and support to C.C. and the family.
The family has set up an endowment fund in C.C.’s memory to award scholarships and grants to support research targeted at improving human health and will gratefully accept donations in lieu of flowers. If you wish to make a contribution, please make cheques payable to the "Professor C. C. Liew Memorial Fund" or go to https://www.canadahelps.org/en/pages/professor-cc-liew-memorial-fund/
A celebration of C.C.’s life will be held during the afternoon of August 17, 2019, followed by interment and a consolation feast.