Alumni

KMT and HLN

Updated : August 5, 2019

  • U Khin Maung Toe
  • Dr. Htay Lwin Nyo

U Khin Maung Toe

  • He was admitted to RIT in 1966 along with Ko Wynn Htain Oo (M72).
  • His passion for music overpowered his passion for studies. He subsequently left RIT before graduation.
  • He became an outstanding musician.
  • He never forgot his alma mater and his friends.
  • He decided to pay back by recording “Thamudaya Kyaung” based on the poem by Maung Sein Win (Padeegone, Class of 72, but took sabbatical to graduate three years later).
  • In early 2012, he decided to record a sequel to “Thamudaya Kyaung”. Young belles volunteered to take part in the DVD.
  • He has offered to do a live presentation at the Reunion and Acariya Puzaw Pwe of M72 (and their classmates from other disciplines) in December 2012.
  • Sadly, his health worsened. From the hospital in Singapore, he expressed his desire to see the “Thamudaya Kyaung 2” DVD. His friends in Myanmar complied and sent a DVD by express.
  • We were glad to know that he offered dana to the Sayadaws and listened to the Suttas and Dhamma talks in his final days.
  • M72 offered to take care of his final journey.
  • I was a Guest at the M72 gathering in December 2012. It was somber. Maung Sein Win (Padeegone) was overwhelmed with sorrow, and left the gathering without reciting his “Thamudaya Kyaung” poem. The attendees received the “Thamudaya Kyaung” DVD.
  • The following are some memories of Ko Khin Maung Toe by his beloved friends.

Message from Saya U Kyaw Sein (M65)

‎*** To all RIT Alumni Far and near ***

Ko Khin Maung Toe passed away in Singapore this morning (November 14, 2012).

May his soul rest in peace.

Message from Ko Wynn Htain Oo

Attention all Mech 72

Please be informed that our dearest friend Khin Mg Toe’s funeral service will be held in Singapore at 3.45 pm local time.

We, closest friends of Khin Mg Toe, have requested his family to allow us to pay the funeral cost on behalf of Mech72.

All Mech 72 in Singapore do all needful things to help his bereaved family.

RIT Alumni International Newsletter

We are deeply saddened to learn that Ko Khin Maung Toe did not live long enough to attend and entertain at M72 Reunion and SPZP-2012. He was an icon for the music world. Several sayas and remember love his songs. M72 is known for the unity and strength and the passion for the alma mater.

Thamudaya Kyaung” (original and sequel) were written by the famed poet Maung Sein Wi (Padeegone). The musical rendition was provided by Ko Khin Maung Toe with the accompaniment of Ko Ye Lwin and Myizzima Hlynne. Miss International and her friends volunteered to take part in the DVD. U Wynn Htain Oo posted a teaser — trailer for the DVD — on the RIT Alumni Facebook Pages and also on You Tube.

Second Anniversary of Ko KMT’s demise

Ko Khin Maung Toe passed away in Singapore in 2012.

The newspaper clipping is for the 2nd anniversary of Ko Khin Maung Toe’s demise by his friends (mainly from the M72 Group).

  • Sein Win (Poet, Author) : Maung Sein Win (Padeegone)
  • Wynn Htain Oo
  • Maung Maung Oo
  • Win Myint
  • Than Soe (a) Kyone Seint
  • Mya Bu
  • Victor Aung Myin
  • M. K. Hla Win
  • Han Sein
  • Soe Myint (Beik/Mergui)
  • Aye Thin
  • Myint Pe
  • Tha Tun
  • Myo Oo
  • Nay Tun
  • Thein Tun
2nd Anniversary of Khin Maung Toe’s demise

Book honoring the memory of Ko KMT

  • Maung Sein Win (Padeegone),
  • Ko Tin Aye Kyu
  • Win Min Htwe
  • Tin Wai (Tar Tone)
  • Ko Myint Pe (M72)
  • Ko Wynn Htain Oo (M72)
  • Ko Win Myint (M72)
  • Maung Taing Pin
  • and several others wrote articles of Ko Khin Maung Toe.

Thamudaya Kyaung 1 and 2

In 2018, Ko Khin Maung Toe (GBNF) recorded the sequel of “Thamudaya Kyaung” and promised to perform in person at the M72 Reunion and Acariya Pu Zwe Pwe.

Maung Sein Win (Padeegone) is a nationally acclaimed writer and Laureate Poet. His lyrics were set to tune by Ko Khin Maung Toe and his musician friends (including Ko Ye Lwin of Mizzama Hlinne). Lovely Belles volunteered to take part in the filming of “Thamudaya Kyaung (Parts One and Two)”.

Sad news came in that Ko Khin Maung Toe was hospitalized in Singapore. One News Agency unethically rushed to pronounce him dead.

Dr. Htay Lwin Nyo (EP74)

  • Htay Lwin Nyo matriculated from SPHS in 1968.
  • He was admitted to RIT as Roll Number One of 1st BE.
  • He was selected Tekkatho Lu Ye Chun.
  • He graduated among the top of the EP74 class.
  • He did his M.Sc. in Computer Science at UCC.
  • He received a Ph.D. in EE from Syaracuse University, New York.
  • His final job was as Part Time Professor at San Jose State University (SJSU).
  • He used the spare time for his hobbies :
    Tinkering old cars
    Painting
    Cooking
    Stock Market
    Writing movie scripts
  • He did not miss a class. When he did not show up for a few classes, the students were alarmed and requested SJSU authorities to check his home. They found the doors locked. After a few days, they broke in to find Dr. Htay Lwin Nyo lifeless on his bed. Postmortem indicated an aneurysm.
  • Since Dr. Htay Lwin Nyo was single and had no next-o-kin in the USA, SJSU asked the Burmese Community to help. Members of the “RIT Alumni International” and BAPS helped with the fund raising for the final journey of HLN.
  • I was honored to push the incinerator, and later to scatter the ashes in the ocean. There was no next-of-kin of HLN in the USA. KMZ remembered that Kyaw Swa Than (Jaws, UCC) was HLN’s cousin. The missing link was supplied by some alumni including Saya U Ko Ko Kyi (EC72). KMZ set up special web page for HLN. My poem was also posted there. I wrote about HLN’s Sea Burial for BAPS Newsletter.

†Memorial Pages

U Khin Maung Zaw (EC76, KMZ) set up the “HLN Memorial Pages” in the ex-RIT web site (which is now defunct). I wrote a poem “HTAY LWIN NYO“.

I also wrote “A Sea Burial for Professor Htay Lwin Nyo” for the BAPS Newsletter and the RIT web site.

The End of a Sad Saga

  • The weather was exceptionally beautiful this morning — not only in the Silicon Valley where we live and work, but also over the hills along Highway 17, and even in the coastal area around Santa Cruz.
  • There were no fogs, mists, or clouds.
  • I am not an early bird, but I woke up really early this morning to prepare for Dr. Htay Lwin Nyo’s final journey — the scattering of his ashes from a 35 foot trawler motor yacht, DESTINY.
  • On Saturday, 10th June, 2000, Dr. Khin Nyo Thet and Dr. Lyn Swe Aye had retrieved the cremated remains of HLN from Oak Hill Funeral Home (OHFH).
  • OHFH had packed and sealed HLN’s ashes in a sturdy, shining metal box (in compliance with postal regulations).
  • With the approval of HLN’s family members in Yangon, Myanmar, we decided to give HLN a sea burial.
  • RIT Alumni International had earlier sent an advance check of $75 to Captain Pete Petersen, skipper of DESTINY.
  • In his brochure, Captain Petersen clearly stated that “inclement weather will result in a rescheduling”.
  • We do not want high winds to prolong the sad saga.
  • The unusually fine weather, according to Dr. Lyn Swe Aye, must be Htay Lwin Nyo’s kusala (kutho or meritorious deeds) and the well wishing of numerous friends and colleagues.
  • We all agree.
  • Dr. Khin Nyo Thet had asked me to be at her house not later than 7:30 a.m. She was surprised but delighted when I showed up barely a few minutes after 7 AM.
  • “It’s better to be early than late”, she said and gave me a cup of coffee and some biscuits [that looked and tasted like those way back in Burma].
  • Dr. Lyn Swe Aye had come back from his early biking round.
  • There was virtually no traffic on the way to Santa Cruz Yacht Harbor.
  • To cut the story short, DESTINY took off at 5 mph.
  • There were no swells.
  • More than a mile into the ocean waters, the Captain set the gears to neutral.
  • Dr. Khin Nyo Thet scattered Htay Lwin Nyo’s ashes into the ocean waters. There were tears in her eyes. There was also relief knowing that she had done her best to give the last rites to Htay Lwin Nyo.
  • We shared our merits once more to HLN.
  • The round trip took about 50 minutes or so.
  • It was the finale of a sad saga.
  • Thanks to all those who endured with us.
  • May Htay Lwin Nyo rest in peace.

Editor’s Notes (2019) :

  • He did his Masters in Computer Science at UCC.
  • He received his doctorate in Electrical Engineering from Syracuse University, New York.
  • After I moved to Silicon Valley, he came and picked me up. We talked over lunch. He had several hobbies including car repair, cooking, writing movie scripts.
  • He passed away unexpectedly. Since he had never missed a class, his students were worried and reported his absence to the authorities. After a few inspections from the outside, the authorities finally decided to break into the house and found him deceased in his bed supposedly from anuerism.
  • Since he was alone and has not specified his next o kin, the Professor and Head of the Electrical Engineering at San Jose State University requested the students to help find the contact for Htay Lwin Nyo.
  • One student e-mailed to Burmese American Professional Society (BAPS) where I am a member and a Contributing Editor of the BAPS Newsletter.
  • The RIT Alumni International Newsletter and http://www-ex-rit.org set up Memorial Pages and Fund to help with Htay Lwin Nyo’s last journey.
  • U Khin Maung Zaw (KMZ, EC76) remembered U Kyaw Swa Than (“Jaws”, cousin of Htay Lwin Nyo) and relayed the news. We finally gained contact with U Kyaw Lwin Nyo, the elder brother of HLN in Burma.
  • The alumni from Southern California came to San Jose to take part in Htay Lwin Nyo’s last journey.
  • A soon kyaw was offered to the Sayadaws at Tathagata Meditation Center (TMC) in San Jose.
  • I had the honor to press the button to start the incinerator at the Crematorium.
  • I also joined Dr. Lyn Swe Aye and Dr. Khin Nyo Thet to scatter Htay Lwin Nyo’s ashes in the waters of Santa Cruz.
  • The details including “Thank you note” by the sister-in-law of Htay Lwin Nyo and my poem were posted in the “Htay Lwin Nyo Memorial Pages” set up by KMZ in http://www.ex-rit.org
  • A few years back, our plane destined for Newark, New Jersey was diverted to an air field in Syracuse. My spouse wondered if Htay Lwin Nyo wanted us to visit the university where he received his doctorate.
  • “A Sea Burial for Professor Htay Lwin Nyo” was published in the BAPS Newsletter, the RIT Alumni International Newsletter and the http://ex-rit.org web site.
Memories of Htay Lwin Nyo

U Ko Ko Kyi (EC72) wrote :

Ko Hla Min, sad to read about Htay Lwin Nyo’s sea burial. I played a small part in notifying his first cousin Myo San Than in Toronto, when my brother called me from Birmingham, UK and informed me about HLN’s demise. Apparently, someone from California had contacted a friend of my brother’s and asked him to inform me, as he knew that HLN had a cousin living in Toronto. I informed HLN’s cousin Myo San Than, who called his elder brother living in Winnipeg, Canada. Subsequently, this cousin went to the US for HLN’s funeral. HLN was a good friend of mine, although he was two years my junior at RIT.

Khin Maung Zaw (KMZ, EC76) wrote :

I was actually a former classmate of HLN’s younger brother Aung Lwin Nyo in St. Paul’s High School [SPHS (6) Botataung]. All their brothers were OPs, HLN was 2 years senior to us, Old Paulians. I did not know HLN that well until we met again, the third time, at UCC. Of course he was part of our rival group while at RIT. Both of us ended up in US, he was several years earlier than me.

We met again when he moved to West Coast, namely San Jose, California while I was in Seattle. We visited him in San Jose, went Yosemite among other places, he visited us in Seattle, went up to Vancouver, Canada. Couple of years moved, he became upset with me for a reason unknown to me at the time, refused to take my calls. I eventually met him on one of my visits to California, forced him to tell me why he did not want to talk to me any longer. According to him, there were some rumors back in Yangon about his demise, his parents were very upset and he surmise that it could have been me who spread these rumors. I had to swear to him that those were nothing to do with me at all, as I lost contact with everyone, family and friends, back in Burma at that time.

So one could imagine my despair when I received a call, a year or so later, from Maurice Chee (M75) that HLN was found dead in his apartment, asking me if I knew him and also requested me to make an announcement on www,ex-rit,org site. I had to explain Maurice the background story, told him I would not do so until I have a solid information. I ended up calling HLN’s head of department at SJSU, San Jose State University. She assured me that they went to HLN’s apartment, broke it inside with the help of the Police. Sad news indeed. While Maurice Chee, Ko Banny Tan (M70), U Hla Min and RIT Alumni at BAPS, Bay Area alumni group, started working on the funeral, I called a friend, HLN’s cousin, in Manitoba, Canada, Kyaw Zwa Than (ex-UCC), to get the contact of HLN’s family back in Rangoon. I finally spoke with the elder brother, Ko Kyaw Lwin Nyo, who requested us to proceed with the funeral.

PS: I met HLN’s elder brother for the first time, this passed November 2018, at the OPA, Old Paulians’ Association, dinner. My OP friends told me that Aung Lwin Nyo met similar fate, passed away while in his bed some years back. Myo San Than (as mentioned in U Ko Ko Kyi’s comment) is the younger brother of Kyaw Zwa Than. KZT’s family : KZT, his wife KCube (Khin Khin Kyi) and their two sons, Alex and Nicholas, have since moved to Denver, Colorado, USA.

Categories: Alumni

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