- 陳智雄烈士的女兒陳雅芳(Vonny Chen) 的發言
Statement by Tan Geh-Hong，Indonesian daughter of Tan Tie-Hiong - Executed in Taipei May 28，1963
June 27，2013，at National Taiwan University Alumni Association, Taipei
My name is Tan Geh-Hong (Chen Ya-Fang) in Chinese, and I was born July 28, 1949. My name is Vonny Vitawati in Indonesia; I chose the name Vonny to be like Hong. I am the daughter of Tan Tie-Hiong (Chen Chih-Hsiung).
I have come to Taiwan many times to try to find out about my father. In about 1980 丨 received a letter from the police department in Pingtung that he had died in 1963，but I didn’t know how or why. It was only in the last year that I found out that he was executed by the Kuomintang government for his efforts in advocating that Taiwan become an independent country, and it was only in May 2013 that I got nearly all of the documents about his case from the National Archives Bureau, and only now through World United Formosans for Independence have I been able to meet former political prisoners who can tell me about the last weeks and days of his life before May 28，1963.
They can tell you about this in Taiwanese, so let me telt you my own view of my father, which is not known in Taiwan.
My father Tan Tie-Hiong, born 1916，came to Indonesia to serve as a translator for the Japanese army, in early 1945. He came to our small town Boekit Tinggi in central Sumatra. He rented a room from my family, Hokkien Chinese who had been in Indonesia for a few generations, and were Catholics. My grandfather had a store in Boekit Tinggi. So my father met my mother, Tan len-Niu (Chen Ying- Niang), who was only sixteen then and very beautiful; my mother was one- quarter Dutch. My mother’s mother did not like my father, because he was a stranger and they had no knowledge of his family. But my father and mother loved each other very much, so they ran away and got married in July 1946，and then came back. They had three children, my elder brother Tan Ui-Hui in 1947， then me，and then my younger brother Tan Ton-Nam two years later.
By the time they got married, the Japanese army had lost the war and left, and the Indonesians had declared their own government established; but the Dutch came back and tried to take control again. There were some Japanese and Taiwanese former soldiers left behind in Indonesia. My father continually travelled to do trading business in gemstones and other goods, but he secretly was also buying weapons for the Indonesian revolutionaries. According to my mother, their bedroom would be full of piles of money, and then my father would buy gold and stuff it into the battery compartments of flashlights, so be could
secretly carry it around when he travelled to buy weapons. He also was generous to help the Taiwanese friends who were left in Indonesia without support, so they could not save any money, and this led to some disagreement with my mother, though they always loved each other and my mother later told us children not to blame him.
But my grandmother said he was an “impossible man” because he came and went so much, and often did not want people to know where he was. He was arrested by the Dutch for a while, as was Sukarno who is known as the father of Indonesia. But finally in 1949 the Dutch recognized the independence of Indonesia, and my father received an award from the Indonesian government in recognition of his contribution. However, he did not choose to become an Indonesian citizen, and the Chinese in Indonesia have usually kept separate.
When I was two years old and my mother was pregnant with my younger brother (he was born November 1950)，my father who had been away for a while came to the bus station of Boekit Tinggi, and sent someone with a message to my mother to pack up the children and come to the bus station and go away with him overseas. But my mother was stopped by my grandmother, who said that with two children and another on the way, it was too dangerous for her to go away with this man; what would she do if he abandoned her far away? So my mother didn’t go to the bus station, and she never saw him again. In fact I believe she never even received any letters to know what happened to him.
After a few years my grandmother’s sister arranged for my mother to marry a doctor. My mother went with him, a good man, and had more children, but left us three children with my grandmother. When I was five, my classmates taunted me
that I was an orphan, my father was a Japanese soldier, and everybody hated the Japanese. I told them that that wasn’t true. I always wanted to find my father.
When I was seven (1956)，my father came back to see us. My uncle took me and my two brothers to the zoo, where my father was waiting for us. We only got to see him for less than an hour, because my grandmother was afraid he would kidnap us. He gave each of us a set of clothing, top and pants. I remember mine was green, with green and white stripes on the top. But he was like a stranger to us, of course. I never saw my father again, nor heard any news of him.
After I got married and was over age 20，I decided to try to find my father. I visited the Chinese Chamber of Commerce, which represented the government in Taiwan, and told them my father’s name. After a few months I got a letter in 1979，which I still have now, which said simply that the Pingtung police department reported that my father had died in 1963. In 1980 I went to Taipei for a few days, but I didn’t know who or where to ask, and didn’t speak Chinese at all. Next in 1984 my younger brother went to Taiwan with a friend who spoke Chinese, and he found the address of our aunt Chen Hsiu-hui at the White Lotus Temple in Luotung, where she was a nun, and the address of relatives in Pingtung. I don’t know how he found this.
The next year or so I went again with my older brother, and my aunt took us to bow in front of the ash urn of my father, and admitted he had been killed by the government, but told us sharply not to ask any more about it. My aunt and her assistant nun also came to visit us in Indonesia once. In 1990 when I visited my aunt took me to her father’s grave in Pingtung on Ching Ming Day, April 5，and I met some of my cousins. But I lost their address, and couldn't remember the Chinese place names.
In about 2003 my Indonesia friend whose wife was Taiwanese told me that the Taiwanese government was going to give compensation for political deaths, and he helped us to find a lawyer in Taiwan. I also visited Taiwan at that time. We had to prepare a lot of documents, such as our birth certificates. (Now I know that my father left all of our names in his will.) My mother was still alive then; she lived till 2010. But I still didn’t know why my father was killed.
Finally in 2012 my brothers and I suddenly received letters from the National Archives saying that we could have the original of our father’s last will, if we came to get it. I don’t know why the Taiwan military kept these letters for so many years without giving them to us, and why they preserved them when they didn’t care about them. My younger brother and 1 prepared to go in March 2013，but my younger brother had to go to the hospital three days before we were scheduled to leave, and I am very sad to say that he passed away two months ago.
When I saw the will, I understood that my father was working for the future of the Taiwan people. He had asked a Dr. Wu Chen-Nan in Japan to look after us three children. I think that Dr. Wu knew my father’s activities. But by the time I got this information, Dr. Wu had already died. Now his son Dr. Wu Dzai-cheng is
president of Mackay Hospital.
At a meeting of WUFI in Taipei on Monday 丨 met Lau
knew he faced death. These questions should be researched, and I will share the documents with people who want to study them.
I hope that this sacrifice of my father's life, as well as the loss of his place in my life, can finally be known, by me and by the people of Taiwan, and that he can now be given his rightful place in Taiwan’s history. I have two children and three grandchildren, and the story of their grandfather Tan Tie-Hiong is also their heritage.
I want to thank WUFI and also Dr. Ted Liu (Lau Chiong-dit, Liu Dzong-deh) for letting me speak to you today and for keeping the memory of my father alive.
Tan Geh_Hong (Chen Ya_Fang) 陳雅芳
Jl. Leuwisari VII-12 Bandung, Jawa-Barat Indonesia
Home Tel: +022-522-0075 (+6222-...)
Cell phone: 08156272^97, 087881219893 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
(transcribed and organized by Linda Gail Arrigo(艾琳達)
Cell phone 0928-899i931 E-mail email@example.com.)
Older Brother: Tan Ui-Kui^Chen Wei-Hui), Indonesian: Wandi Setiawan (born 17 October 1947)，lives in Jakarta, engineer for contracting construction.
Younger Brother: am (Chen Dung-Nan, “East South”)，Indonesian:
Harris Setiawan (born 14 November 1950，passed away 2012).