Sun, Oct 03, 2004 - Page 2 News List

Tea party to be held in late president's memory

By Huang Tai-lin  /  STAFF REPORTER

President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) will preside over a Nov. 7 tea party in memory of the late president Yen Chia-kan (嚴家淦) on the latter's centenary of Yen's birth.

Yen, vice president under Chiang Kai-shek (蔣介石), assumed the presidency in 1975 when Chiang died. Yen held the position until May 1978, when his presidential term was up and Chiang Ching-kuo (蔣經國), son of Chiang Kai-shek, became president. Yen died in 1993.

The Presidential Office has organized several events to commemorate Yen's centenary, including an exhibition on the late president that opened this weekend. The display, scheduled to run for two months, showcases photos and documents relating to Yen as well as some of his personal articles.

The events are Chen's initiative to pay tribute to the late president, Presidential Office Secretary-General Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) said.

Su said Chen had the idea in July, when he recalled Yen's funeral in light of Chiang Ching-kuo's widow's request to have both her husband and Chiang Kai-shek's bodies buried in the military mausoleum according to the State Funeral Law (國葬法) after decades of lying embalmed in temporary mausoleums.

Chen realized then that this year is Yen's centenary and told aides to organize events in his memory.

"Yen Chia-kan had his role in Taiwan's history; [we] can't just forget him," said Su.

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