Second World War heroine Sybil Kathigasu was featured in a Google Doodle tribute today as “never one to back down”, to mark the 117th anniversary of her birth.
The doodle, published on the Google search engine home page in Malaysia, is an illustration of Kathigasu in her nurse’s uniform outside her wartime residence in Papan, Perak, framed by the patterned ribbon of the George Medal.
The George Medal, the second highest British award for civilian courage, was awarded to Kathigasu months before her death on June 12, 1948 from the effects of injuries sustained while in Japanese custody.
Google Doodle’s inscription read: “On the 117th anniversary of Kathigasu’s birth, we remember and celebrate her tireless dedication to freedom. Thank you, Kathigasu, for your courage and the powerful legacy you’ve left behind.”
It noted that Sybil Kathigasu was the only woman in Malaya to be awarded the George Medal.
Google recounted how Sybil and her husband Dr Abdon Clement Kathigasu supported the resistance movement during the Japanese occupation of Malaya, secretly supplying medicines and medical services to Allied forces, and sharing information from listening to the BBC shortwave broadcasts.
The couple had been operating a clinic at Brewster Road (Jalan Sultan Idris Shah) in Ipoh, but went to Papan days before Japanese forces occupied Ipoh in 1941. They were arrested in 1943.
FMT Reporters Online