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Dion Jayasuriya Demise of a thorough gentleman and true friend

22 December 2020 12:00 am - 0     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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  • Dion never turned down anyone who came to him for help. He was large-hearted and magnanimous in his association with his friends. He has sponsored those classmates who were not doing too well and also financially supported their families whenever any of them died

Dion Jayasuriya joined S. Thomas’ College, Mount Lavinia in January 1959 from year 1 in the Lower School. I joined S. Thomas’ Mount Lavinia to Lower Four (Standard 6) from St. Thomas’ Prep. School, Kollupitiya and, I had the good fortune of becoming friends with Dion. He was very respectful to our teachers and won their admiration. We observed his very genuine, generous and kind qualities from way back then. We were very close friends up to the time of his demise at 2.00 a.m. on 18th December 2020.

Dion suggested to name our batch at STC, The Thomian Freshmen of 59 since many started College in 1959 with others joining this batch from Prep School, Kollupitiya, Bandarawela and from S. Thomas, Gurutalawa. There were a few who also joined our batch from other schools. He was fully involved in all the college and class group projects and was a very useful member of the Old Boys Association in which body he held many positions in committees. He was a live wire of The Thomian Freshmen of 59’ Group. After leaving College, Dion joined Pure Beverages Co. Ltd. and thereafter, Carson Cumberbatch & Co, rising to be a main Board Director. Later, he became the Managing Director of CML-MTD. Dion was a man of integrity and honour and would get very affected emotionally if anyone engaged in acts of fraud or deceit. Dion was a former Captain and President of the Royal Colombo Golf Club (RCGC) and in May 2004, he was elected President of the Sri Lanka Golf Union (SLGU). Dion never turned down anyone who came to him for help.

He was large-hearted and magnanimous in his association with his friends. He has sponsored those classmates who were not doing too well and also financially supported their families whenever any of them died. What is noteworthy is that he insisted that his contributions and donations be kept anonymous. Such was the calibre of the man, a truly rare breed. He did not choose his friends to gain benefit from them but rather, to enjoy genuine friendship and fellowship. He was well-read, very knowledgeable and was able to engage in conversations of diverse subject areas. He was straight in all his dealings and was courageous to call a spade, a spade. What was best in him was that he emulated and brought to life, the poem ‘IF’ by Rudyard Kipling. Although we share a common surname we were not related in any way. However, I being the only child in my family saw Dion as my sincere brother who stood by me at all times. My wife and children considered Dion as a ‘brother’ to me and family member. He leaves behind his grieving wife Rouza, son Dimitri and daughter Nadeera. “Age shall not weary him, nor the years condemn. At the going down of the sun and in the morning, We will remember him” The many meritorious acts Dion performed to make others happy and the most meaningful life he led setting an example to others, will certainly help him to shorten his journey through samsara and attain the supreme bliss of nirvana. Dr Nalin N. P. Jayasuriya

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