The spirit of camaraderie was strong at the National Press Club last Saturday, as a group of some 70 ex-Sun newspaper staff came together for a reunion luncheon.
Plenty of memories and contact numbers were exchanged at the event, organised by a core group led by former newsdesk reporter Linda Archibald (speaking in pic). The attendees spanned the entire gamut of ex-Sun staff, from the pioneers in the early 1990s, right up to more recent recruits.
Present were former the Sun managing editor Chong Cheng Hai (Big Bossman and the editorial brain behind Focus Malaysia these days), and former senior news editor Robert Ho, as well as many other editors and reporters as well as graphic artists/designers, photographers, IT and production staff. Many are still in journalism, though some have gone into various fields, including the corporate world. A number of the journalists also run their own businesses.
Some of the ex-Sun staff had travelled from other states to attend the reunion, with a few even coming in from other countries.
Those gathered also took a moment to honour the ex-Sun staff who have passed on. Linda read out the names of 24 journalists, including former Sun consultant and political editor Zainon Ahmad, who had passed on in March 2013.
Gift bags, containing a Sun-themed cupcake made by an ex-Sun staff, a pen and a Touch’n’ Go card with RM10 pre-loaded – courtesy of the Johor state government – were handed out to those present.
As the ex-Sunnies mixed and mingled, it was clear that the bonds of friendship formed at the newspaper, which started in 1993 as a paid daily taking on the Star and New Straits Times, have not been forgotten. Over the years, the Sun, which pioneered the concept of daily pullout sections in the country and won awards for its reporting, had undergone several radical changes in content and shifted to a free paper model in 2002. It is the highest circulated English newspaper, with a circulation of 306,249.