Dr. Aung Jee / Gyi (USA)
My Friend Khin Tun (Peter), My friend since college day one, he is a dedicated kind hearted neuro rehab consultant in the UK. He is a brilliant analytical thinker of renown and beloved husband and father of two also brilliant young men. Memories of our friendship flood my mind.
We were in second MB when the workers riots rocked the city of Rangoon, we two were about the only ones left in the anatomy dissection room. Most students had not come that day and those who did had left. We two were doggedly dissecting into a cadaveric skull from the roof of the middle ear cavity to expose the three ossicles inside the middle ear. Khin Tun was lead dissection and he wasn’t going to stop till done. Our tutor had told us to leave and we were carrying on, we were about 19 then. We finally finished and I could finally convince him it was time. We left from Leik Khone dissection halls via the back on to a gravel road in the back leading to Inya Road. It was the short cut from Prome road to Inya road. Near the Inya road entrance my dad’s batman U Htar Pei was waiting with the family car. He had surmised that I would take the back road to Inya Road and stay off the main roads. He sighed a relief and took us home, we dropped Khin Tun at his family home in Windermere on the way. Throughout this Khin Tun was reciting the merits of the ossicles of the ear. I wondered if this was his way of dealing with stressful situations. He is an exceptionally bright individual, interested in knowledge only for the propagation of more knowledge for practical solutions, never for academic accolades or distinctions, one that I truly believe that was never interested in prizes or glory or renown, just a purist thirst for knowledge to solve problems.
Thus, we would finish medical school with only those close friends knowing how brilliant and knowledgeable he really is. After our House surgeon period we took up an assignment to collect data on Maternal and Childhealth in Upper Burma Townships, We spent the month of summer driving all over the dry midlands of ah nyar and collecting data in Magwe, Taung Dwin Gyee and Kyaut Ba Daung per project of our mentor Saya Johnny, interviewing auxiliary midwives, Community Health Workers and collecting answered questionnaires. We borrowed a land rover from the Agricultural department and he navigated and planned while I drove, talking all the time of friends, college and future hopes and plans.
I was to join the army after the trip and he would continue in Maternal and Childcare research projects while opening a private clinic. We ended the trip at Kyaut Ba Daung where Nwe and her Final Part One PSM group were staying for their community health project. We would spend a joyous night and half day there exploring Mt Popa and singing in front of the barracks well into the deep starry night in front of a bonfire. Afterwards we would leave, I would immediately join my unit in the army and Khin Htun would finish writing up the report. We spent many a night on makeshift cots or on the floor in closed high schools talking of anything under the sky eating at roadside restaurants along the road. Young restless and full of plans for the future that was roaring towards us at a fast pace. We had plans to go abroad for further training but never did we guess we would be leaving Burma to settle in foreign lands.
About a year later I would be attending Young Officers Course in Mhawbi and Khin Tun together with Pe Thet Khin was in a research project in Hlegu, Maternal and Childcare under our mentor Saya Johnny. I was on weekend free days and had taken a commercial line car to Hlegu where they were. Basically hung on to the back of a pickup with the spare till I got to the car gate. I had bought some roast duck and roast pork for them from a Chinese restaurant in Mhawbi. Also, brought a bottle of army rum for drinks. Khin Tun does not drink but loves roast duck and pork. Before dinner the three of us walked over to their private clinic in Hlegu, a little rented room and foyer with an examining table and desk with waterbath etc. A medium size closet for drug and medical paraphernalia. A few patients later two young ladies came walking into the clinic for a consultation and treatment. One was the friend cum chaperone as was traditional in a gossip prone rural setting and the other was a pretty young teacher with a rash on her hand. My friend Peter Khin Tun was immediately attentive as her youth and beauty captivated him. He proceeded to examine the rash, most likely an allergic eczema from some chemical, like it would earn him a Nobel prize in medicine if he were to cure it. The interest seemed pretty mutual to me and PTK who looked on with slight smiles. He asked for a second opinion and we agreed with him and I left a tube of steroid cream from my night bag for her. PTK the schemer made sure Peter would get all credit by telling the fair young teacher that it was a present from Bo Gyi Aung Gyi since his wife didn’t need it anymore. It was his way of ensuring Peter was a lone contender though Nwe and I had not married yet. There was really no need as it was love at first sight for both of them. The rest is history with two brilliant young men for sons.
Winmar would tell the encounter in her own sweet way. There were three young doctors at the clinic, One tall fair handsome one , of course Peter, one slim one with a mischievous knowing twinkle, you have to remember this was PTK two hundred pounds ago, and presumed single heavily tanned short haired officer, ruggedly handsome, I added the last bit, laugh if you want. We would joke about it anytime we met with Winmar looking on with her sweet gentle smile.
I remember a wonderful time when we met again in UK. My family and I were visiting UK and Peter and his had settled down in UK after taking the MRCP exams. The exams were a breeze and he finished in record time. Myself, Aung Hpyoe, Ernie and Min Zaw aung and Peter were taking a hike into Epping forest. Taking pictures with our new found hobby in cameras. We persuaded peter to come along with us before lunch promising him a Bariyani lunch and a cold drink at the pub. I also promised I would carry extra cold water and all the cold pop fizz he could drink under the English summer sun. It was a most happy time taking pictures together ribbing each other with old escapades of youth, old girlfriends failed courtships etc. Talking ill of all those not present with renewed gusto and guffaws. We had some drinks at a pub and went home to Aye Aye Yee’s home for a sumptuous lunch hosted by her and Ko Min Zaw Aung. Khin Tun ever thoughtful had brought some fresh coconut which we prepared and have young coconut with sweet juice. Photos from that gathering are the some of the most treasured memories we have.
A few years back we met again in Rangoon when we both were there to see our parents. Our parents homes are about a mile from each other, my mother’s home in Golden Valley and his parents home in Windermere road. One morning we made plans and I walked over to his house at 0530. By the time I got there found Peter making fried rice on a wok, in the kitchen. He’s a first class cook. We had a plate each fast and walked over to Shwedagon pagoda hill about two miles walk , it was still dark when we got to the base of the hill , the flower stall owners were still sorting lotus blooms at the base of the hill before carrying the bunches up for vending to the early worshipers. We walked up the Zaung Dan and did the rounds of family members birth day corners, and Peter showed me the various parts his family had donated. I said a prayer in my mothers corner and my father’s favorite Bayan tree sate. After watching the beautiful Rangoon sunrise from the hillside we walked down the East Zaung Dan to YeTarShay road street market. At the base of the hill we found our friend Ko Aung Khin waiting for us beside his brand new Nissan crossover. He does not like rising too early but was willing to wait for us at the base. We had built up an appetite for a second breakfast by that time. We walked to MyaungMya Daw Cho for MontHingar, there we three had breakfast and paid for the two monks and thelashin eating there as a good deed for the day. Afterwards Ko Aung Khin aka Zaw Zaw The Phyu would drive us home, we stopped first at my house and my two friends graciously said hello to my mom and sat down for a chat.
Going back many decades of friendship there was much to say and reminiscence while laughing heartily all the time. Time flies and we vowed to do do it again. He and Winmar also found the time and effort to attend my daughters wedding Swun Kywe at Mahasi in Rangoon from their busy schedule. He would also visit my mom even when I’m not there in Rangoon.
True friends always there for you. I pray very hard Peter, you had so much more to contribute to the world, your daily meditation must have given you much mental strength you are surly now in a higher realm, please the world was a better place with you in it.
We miss you my friend, my regards to Uncle Tin U, Winmar, Min Ko and Ye Lay, stay in touch we are all family.
U Tin Htoon
Dear Win Mar, Min Ko, Prudence & Ye Lay,
Today is already one month that your beloved husband and father Dr. Peter Khin Tun passed away so unexpectedly. Fortunately you were able to arrange a proper funeral for him where relatives and friends around the world were able to join. Today you offered the requisites to Birmingham Sayadaw to mark the one month of his passing and again relatives around the world were able to participate.
Kindly see the attachments and hope that this will help you in in facing the vicissitudes of life.
He is the son of U Sway Tin (Ma Cherry’s elder brother) and Daw Kyi Kyi Daing (daughter of U Than Daing). His grandfather and father translated some of Mogok Sayadaw’s works. They recorded Sayadaw’s dhamma talks.
After studying Physics / Electronics and working in US, he came back to Myanmar to take care of her mother, to volunteer as Mentor / Consultant to Physics / Electronics teachers and students and to help with the Mogok Vipassana Ah Phwe that was co-founded by his grandfather and parents.
U Thaung Lwin
Peter was the first son for the parents (U Tin U and Dr. Daw Khin Kyi Nyunt).
From his father’s side, he was the first grandson and first nephew. It is therefore not surprising that his grand parents, parents, uncles and aunts showered him with much love, since birth.
From his mother’s side, he was not so senior among the 20+ cousins, but they all loved him for his friendliness and precious medical advice from far (in the UK) and near (in Yangon). His cousin Ohnmar Khin acted as Master of Ceremonies at the Buddhist Marriage Ceremony in New Zealand for Peter’s son Min Ko. Ma Toni (eldest of the Tin Gyi cousins) wrote about Peter’s compassion while treating her son.
Peter always acknowledge thanks whenever he has a chance. He thanked me in words as well as in notes, for rewarding him and his siblings whenever they stood among the first three in their classes and school exams.
When I came to find work in Singapore in 1992, I sent to him thick volumes of MRCP preparation books, which my mother Daw Cheng Kim and my sister Cho Cho Hlaing (who were returning to Myanmar, after accompanying Shwehintha Sayadaw and another monk, from their trip to USA, which my mother sponsored) took back to Peter.
Peter and his friends (incuding Pe Thet Khin) studied these volumes of books at my mother’s house, 45 Than Lwin Road. He and his friends succeeded in their MRCP exams. On getting these books, he wrote to me and thanked me, quoting “Giving a person a fishing rod to fish is better than
giving fish” as I have given him the tools to further his career and to help and heal mankind.
Peter will always be remembered for his kindly, loving, warming, helpful nature and for his sacrifice to his life, knowing that he could be effected by this deadly virus.
Peter had done many good deeds in his life, which will enable him to be in a higher plane, achieving Nibbana at the end.
Ah Hlu for Peter
by Win Mar, Min Ko and Ye Lay
Peter passed away on April 13, 2020.
On May 13, 2020, Win Mar, Min Ko and Ye Lay offered requisites to Birmingham Sayadaw and shared merits for Peter.
Several relatives saw the dana offering via Zoom.
Ye Lay’s remembrance of his Phwa Phwa
One of May May’s friends planted a white cherry tree on front lawn. A pink cherry tree will come on Saturday and it will also be planted.
Today I recited prayers as I poured water on the white prunus cherry tree.
From Dr. San Hla (One of Peter’s best friends, Consultant Physician) and Daw Khin Khin Oo
My brother, Dr. Peter Khin Tun, passed away peacefully a month ago (13 April 2020).
We grew up in a large family estate and we had very enjoyable childhood. We went to same school and University. He looked after me, and taught me many things including Buddhism, Mindfulness meditation, and to find out about “ inner peace”. He also taught me for cooking, many sports like football, badminton, swimming, and cycling. He also gave me a good guide to become a compassionate doctor.
He was very kind with full of loving kindness. He was very keen to do many good deeds, including various donations, looking after our parents, relatives and friends. He was very passionate to cook good food for all relatives and friends visiting his house.
We shared many good memories in Myanmar, in UK and various holidays in Italy and New Zealand.
I love you and will miss you for the rest of my life.
- Three Albums for Peter
- One Album for Ye Myint
- One Album for Relatives
- One Album for Relatives and Friends