SHIFU ALAN M TINNION

MASTER OF TRADITIONAL CHINESE FIGHTING ARTS


 

Departure From China And Settlement In Malaya

 
 

A day dawned where the full extent of the Japanese invasion fell on the land of his birth, and that of the Southern Shaolin Temple. 

As control of the by now largely conquered province of Fujian passed to the invading forces, Japanese Military Intelligence officers were able to gather sufficient information as to the names and identities of the province’s most renowned Gong Fu fighters.

 
 
In addition, they were in a position to appreciate that amongst the group of organised patriots, Master Chee was highly successful in leading opposition to their cause. 
 
 
This was no more than the truth, for Grandmaster Chee Kim Thong became leader and trainer of a select group of patriotic fighters ‘The Big Sword Army,’ a diehard resistance group highly effective in their military activities directed against the occupying forces. 
 
 

Not surprisingly, Master Chee realised he had to leave the land of his birth.  His mother earnestly advised him to depart from China and settle in North-East Malaya, at Dungun in the province of Terengganu (where his father worked in a mine). In later times the family had - and still maintain - interests in the mining and rubber plantation industries there. 

Due to his tremendous determination and the severity of his martial arts training, Master Chee, after many hardships and perils, successfully escaped from occupied China to Malaysia.

 
 

Within a few months of his gaining the seeming safe haven of Malaya, the Japanese military invaded that land on their march in force to Singapore: one which saw the young man flee from his new home at Dungun, first to Kuala Lumpur, and eventually Singapore. 

Master Chee felt, in his own words, ‘personally pursued, as if it were a vendetta, by the Japanese army,’ for as the invaders advanced, not only to conquer but to seek and capture those like himself on their ‘Most Wanted List,’ he had fled to Singapore.  In that city he had dissembled his Gong Fu powers and background and sought employment as a menial telecommunications worker.  Singapore was however, soon after occupied by the Japanese military, so he was forced to flee again, back to Malaya.