Taiwan Marks 11 Anniversary of Death of Song Meiling

October 27, 2014
Editor: Sophia Zhu

The Taiwan Women's Federation held the 11th Anniversary Memorial Service of Song Meiling on October 23 in Taipei, capital city of southeast China's Taiwan Province. The theme of the memorial service was "eternal memory". Koo said they plan to invite Song's friends and relatives to attend the memorial services every year.

Song Meiling was one of the three Song sisters and has been described as "the one who loved power". As the wife of Chiang Kai-shek, she was also known as Madam Chiang Kai-shek and played a prominent role in the politics of the Republic of China.

The fourth of six children, Song was born in Shanghai to Charlie Song, a Methodist minister and businessman who made a fortune selling bibles in China. Song Meiling met Chiang Kai-shek in 1920. The couple never had any children.

After the defeat of her husband's government in the Chinese Civil War in 1949, Madame Chiang followed her husband to Taiwan, while her sister Song Qingling stayed on the mainland, siding with the communists.

Song died in New York City, in her Manhattan apartment in 2003 at the age of 105 or 106. Her remains were temporarily interred at Ferncliff Cemetery in Hartsdale, New York, pending an eventual burial with her late husband who was entombed in Tzuhu, Taiwan. The stated intention is to have them both buried in mainland China once political conditions make it possible.

Her sister, Song Qingling, as the widow of Sun Yatsen, became an important member of the elite of the People's Republic of China. She was present during the Tiananmen rostrum when Mao Zedong delivered his speech inaugurating the PRC in 1949. But despite her elevated position and high political visibility, she was only officially inducted as a Party member one week before her death.

(Source: tw.people.com.cn/Translated and edited by Women of China)

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