When Ms Rita Lai from the SMI Alumni Klang Valley e-mailed me in March 2014 regarding writing a tribute for a book dedicated to Brother Vincent Corkery, I quickly responded. For me it was an honour to write something about a person who had indeed contributed so much for education, character building, human development and for fellow Michaelians.
Below is the tribute I put forth for the book, "Life Ever Dawning".
To pen a few words to pay tribute to a good man is indeed an honour especially when the thoughts are to be crystallised into a beautiful book dedicated to this good man.
For a man who has dedicated his entire life for education - imparting values and good deeds, choosing to walk among school children and fellow teachers, with a ready smile and an enthusiastic spirit- this man is truly an extraordinaire and a rarity. I can think of no other person who has touched more lives in ways during his tenure as a Lasallian teacher and later on as the Brother Director of St Michael’s Institution, Ipoh.
Brother Vincent Corkery, for me, is a friend and a brother. It is the dedication, his honesty and modesty that make him a true gentleman. When I read about the life and beautiful traits of St John Baptist de La Salle, I must admit that Brother Vincent possesses similar traits too.
He walks the life of our Founder and that makes of him a living icon relevant to the young and old. To make a decision to leave behind comfort, live a life in a foreign land in order to give the less fortunate a chance through education chiselled the Brother Vincent we see today.
He chose the difficult road so that the journey of millions of others might be a little easier, and for that fact alone, need not look far – Brother Vincent makes himself available to us.
Brother, as Michaelians tread and work toward being persons of solid moral character with finely developed moral conscience and being prudent and discerning men, we take a long bow thanking you for your encouragement, patience and wise words.
QUIS UT DEUS
Many old boys, had and still have, strong admiration and respect for this man. To commemorate the passing of Brother Vincent, the Alumni folks are organising a Memorial Mass, " Come Celebrate The Life of Brother Vincent" on 22 June 2016. Do come for fellowship and at the same time, talk about the man who had impacted our lives.