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1368 - 22/02/18



In treasured and ever loving memory of our dear friend Yoganathan
formerly of Thondamannar Jaffna District, Singapore and London
died six months ago on 28th August 2017
at Newham University Hospital, Glen Road, London E13.

He was a very generous and helpful person who helps the poor
and anyone who needs help, he was a friend in need.

May his soul rest in peace.

Remembered by his loved ones in Hamara Ghar
Green Street London E139JW and Abroad

1367 - 15/02/18


Prof Thambipillai Varagunam, MD FRCP (UK) M.Ed
A medical academic with a vision

When I was a medical student in the seventies, the majority of my teachers were very
conservative in their approach to imparting knowledge. Although they instilled the values
and ethos required of a future doctor but were reluctant to embrace the changes to
develop the students nor did they make any attempt to nurture enquiring minds! They were
particularly loathe to question their own methods or performance.

Prof Varagunam however was an exception for he was very enthusiastic to explore new
ways of learning advocated by the Western academics who were gaining insight in to their
own abilities, calling for analysis and research in to teaching methods displaying an interest
to adopt new concepts of medical education. His enthusiasm was augmented by what he
saw & learnt in Illinois, USA where he obtained his Masters degree in Medical Education.
Simply put he was a visionary, one of its first kind in the mid sixties perhaps better
described as the doyen of medical education when he set foot in Peradeniya as a lecturer in medicine.

On Wednesday the 7th of February 2018 generations of past medial students lined up in
Kandy to pay their last respects as the mortal remains of the late Prof Varagunam lay at the
funeral parlour. A cross section of the population from many parts of Srilanka and across
the globe mourned the passing away of the gentle giant who dedicated most of his life time
serving the faculty of medicine at Peradeniya first as an assistant lecturer moving on to
become a senior lecturer and then the Professor of Medicine, the post he held until the end
of 1979. His achievements during this period were legion. While Chairing the division of
medicine he also took over the medical education department from Prof Bibile bringing
under his wings Drs Jayawickremarajah & Palitha Abeykoon who too made their own mark
in the speciality with the former heading the department in Batticaloa and the latter taking
on the mantle as the director of WHO, South East Asia.

Thambipillai Varagunam was born in Kallady Upodai in the Eastern Region of Srilanka, on
08/11/1930 . He was the only child of the late Mr Thambipllai and the late Mrs Sellathangam
Thambipillai. Mr Thambipillai was an assistant medical practitioner ( AMP ) by profession &
was a well known philanthropist cum landed proprietor from the area. The young Varagunam received
his early education at Govt Central College, Batticaloa moving to Royal college, Colombo where
he excelled in academics and sports, Rugby being his forte. Entering the University of Ceylon
to read medicine in 1950, he qualified in 1955 taking up training posts in Colombo North
after which he left for UK to further his training. On completing the training with a membership
of the Royal College of Physicians, Varagunam returned to Colombo to join the dept of medicine
as a lecturer. His return coincided with the establishment of the faculty of medicine
at Peradeniya which he chose as his base When the late Prof Macan Markar relinquished his duties
at Peradeniya the then Vice Chancellor of the University, the late Sir Nicholas Attygalle
hand picked Varagunam as the person to Chair the department. Varagunam reciprocated
the trust Sir Nicholas placed on him with his exemplary leadership and commitment.
The modernisation of medical education resonated well with the expectations of his students.

He entered holy matrimony in 1962 tying the knot to Miss Thayalam Sabaratnam,(daughter
of the late Dr Sabaratnam from the same province) who was to become his life long
partner & soul mate. She has been a tower of strength to him for the last 55 years.
Prof was a very compassionate man extremely popular among every one who came in to
contact with him. Sudharma Vidyatilake, his former trainee house officer and my
contemporary, currently a consultant haematologist recalls the days she would be enjoying
sumptuous meals prepared by Mrs Varagunam at their house where the juniors would
gather often. Apparently this was a routine that Prof would carry out for all his trainees
during their time spent under his tutelage.

Prof retired from the University post in 1979 when he was head hunted by the World Health
Organisation serving it in an advisory capacity as a consultant in Tropical Diseases for a
period of ten years based in Geneva. On completing this stint he returned to Kandy when
the Srilankan Government sought his help to establish the medical school in Batticaloa in
keeping with its policy of expanding University education across the country. This was a
great opportunity for the Prof to contribute to his birthplace which he loved. He jumped at
the opportunity taking on the role as the Chancellor of the Eastern Province University
steering and leading the establishment over the next ten years retiring from the post just
after 1990. The impact of the ensuing civil war on the infrastructure was such that he was
experiencing difficulties with travelling from Kandy to Batticaloa and was unable to carry on
with this mission any longer.

Driven by humanistic principles Prof never opted to do private practice either during his
teaching career or after retirement. He was more focussed on rendering the necessary help
to the institution he served with loyalty continuing in a voluntary capacity serving as the
Chair of the medical research committee and promoting the activities of the Peradeniya
Medical School Alumni Association which he was a patron of. Troubled by peripheral
neuritis he had to cut down his activities although he remained intellectually sharp and
coherent retaining his sense of humour until he was called to rest.

Philanthropy was in his genes. He donated vast acres of ancestrally owned land in Karativu
for a hospital to be built for the local residents. In addition part of his property was acquired
by the state for the build of the current Eastern University complex. He was down to earth
and simple in his ways. Except for official duties he seldom dressed himself smart. He was
also a man of good humour. On one occasion while going through the Australian customs
he was asked if he could speak English! His response was " I speak better English than you mate!"

On the 4th Feb 2018 he succumbed to complications arising from prostate cancer. Fate was
such that as the nation woke up to commemorate the independence, from colonial rule, his
students , colleagues and patients began to grieve the loss of a great physician, a teacher,
a dedicated mentor and a true friend who touched several hearts.

An ebullient clinician, academic and a gentleman always displaying a pleasant disposition,
Prof Varagunam throughly enjoyed the company of his old students, a rare characteristic
for a man of his standing. I was very privileged to meet him often in the last 15 years.
Gathering with contemporaries over a meal we would often reminisce, catching up on
various topics including medical politics of Srilanka!

Last year Prof stuck a jubilant mood on the day I inquisitively touched on his 'alma mater'
days at Royal as it was of mutual interest for I too attended the same school. It was Rugby
that he wanted to discuss! He told me how he hooked the ball in 1948 to help Royal beat the
Trinity Lions scoring 6-3 on the first leg and then 8-6 on the second leg, over powering the
Lions again at their own grounds in Asgiriya to wrest the Bradby Shield ( named after a former
principal of Royal ) back to Royal College. A remarkable feat given that Trinity has beaten
the blue and gold boys over the previous four years consecutively condemning Royal Rugby to
the doldrums! So this was a moment of Glory for the Royalists.

Our last meeting was at his daughter's residence in July 2017 in the UK. After this meeting
we bid farewell planning to meet again next summer. He returned to Kandy in Aug 2017. A
few weeks later I received an email from him mourning the death of his close friend Mr
Rudra Rasaratnam ( Retired Cardio Thoracic Surgeon) a fellow Royalist of the same
vintage. He appeared very distressed at the demise of his friend for the contents of the mail
revealed the desolation he was feeling. It may well be that the solitude created by the loss
of friends of his generation was unbearable.

He leaves behind his wife Thayalam, three daughters Mira, Radha and Sita and four grand
children whose grief stricken emotions during the funeral were testimony to how much
they loved their grandfather.

"I slept and dreamt that life was joy. I awoke and saw that life was service.
I acted and behold, service was joy."

- Rabindranath Tagore

May his soul rest in peace.

Sati Ariyanayagam - A grateful student 1972 -1976



In cherished memory of our dear Brother Franco Rexie
Born 17th August 1937
Died 24th February 1960,

former student St.Josephs College Colombo Cultivation Officer
Technical Training Institute Amparai, Queens Scout
First Colombo Governors own, Patrol Leader, former resident at Thimbrigasaya
Govt Flats, Colombo 6 and Batticaloa died in Amparai in trying to rescue a
fellow worker named Gunadasa in the flood waters at Amparai in 1960.

"Greater love hath no man that
he lay down his life for others."

Remembered by his only Sister Dorothy Emmanuel and Brother Christie,
Children and Grand Children in Australia and Brother Kumar UK


Dr Kamala Gomez

The family of the late Dr Kamala Gomez (nee Abeywickrema) wish to express
their sincere thanks to all friends, relatives and Colleagues who attended
the funeral service in Chichester, West Sussex on the 7th February.

They would also like to thank all those who sent floral tributes and
messages of condolences. It is greatly appreciated.

Kamala will be sadly missed by all those who knew her over the years.
She now remains at peace.


DE SILVA - HIRANTHA WEMSIRI - No. 36/34, Watson Peiris Mawatha, Moratuwa.

DISSANAYAKA - RANJANI - No. 140/3, Kalapura Templer's Road, Mount Lavinia.

FERNANDO - SUNIMAL - 48/1, Sri Saranankara Road, Kalubowila, Dehiwala.

GARDIYA LAKSHMAN JAYAMPATHI HEWAWASAM - 30/5, De Silva Cross Road, Kalubowila.

GUNAWARDANA - MALINI KAMALA - 156/4, Colombo Road, Gampaha.

HAYMAN CLAUDE - 4B 8/3, Mattegoda Housing Scheme, Polgasowita.

HEWAWASAM - G. LAKSHMAN JAYAMPATHI - 30/5, De Silva Cross Road, Kalubowila.

INDIGAHAWELA - MAHEEPALA - No. 315/2, Gangarama Rd, Thumowila, Piliyandala.


JAYASINGHE - KIRTHISIRI - No. 28, College Avenue, Mount Lavinia.

JAYAWARDENA - RUBY (R.H.A.) - 37, Mahamegarama Road, Mahamegawatte, Maharagama.

PEIRIS - ANNE IRANI (Nee DIAS) - 867/1, Negombo Road, Mabole, Wattala.

RAJAPAKSE - CHULANI - 26/2, Raymond Road, Nugegoda.

RODRIGO - JEROME CHRISTOPHER - No. 56/1, Sri Wickrama Mawatha, Wattala.

VELUSAMY - KAMALA - No. 629/7, 8th Lane Muttettugoda Road, Talahena, Battaramulla.

WEERAKKODY - Mrs. SOMAWATHI - No. 73/3, Nagahawatta Road, Maharagama.

WIREKOON- (ANIL) EDWIN ARNOLD CHRISTIE - No. 483, Bauddhaloka Mawatha, Colombo 8.

1366 - 08/02/18

ABEYNAYAKE - GNANA - No. 12, Rajasinghe Mw., Borupana, Ratmalana.

ALUWIHARE - NOEL EDWARD - 31/2, Rajawatte Terrace, off Siebel Avenue, Colombo 5.

ANANDAPPA - PETER BENEDICT - 123, Soysza Lane 2, Tewatte, Ragama.

DAISY PUNYASEELI ABAYAWARDENA (nee LEANAGE) - 32/4, Railway Avenue, Colombo 05.


EASWARALINGHAM - VANITHA - No. B-08, H.R. Jothipala Mawatha, Maligawatta, Colombo 10.


FERNANDO - DUNSTAN - 97B, Abeyesekera Road, off Watarappola Road, Mount Lavinia.


GAMAGE - HEMA - 483, Bauddhaloka Mawtha, Colombo 8.


GUNAWARDENA - Mr U.K. - (of 38/1, Miriswatta, Gampaha.

JAYAMANNE - ALFRED (EDDIE) - No. 163, Wijeya Kumaratunge Mawatha, Colombo 5.

JAYASINGHE - MARY GERTRUDE - 36, St. Sylvesters Road, Mt. Lavinia.

JAYASINGHE - Mr. S.J.A. - No. 40/1, Wijayamahimi Mawatha, Deegalla, Kuliyapitiya.

KULATUNGE - LAKSHMI KUMARI - 191/5, Wattaranttenne Place (Cosme Gardens), Kandy.

LAHIRI DE LANEROLLE - 'Kalyani', Pattiyawatththa Road, Kothalawala, Kaduwela.

LAKSHINI PEIRIS - 120/2, de Soysa Road, Rawathawatte, Moratuwa.


MANICKAM - ANTON RENNIE - 77, Millstone Drive, Brampton, Ontario, L6Y 4P6.

METTANANDA - M.W. - 237/23A Vijaya Road, Watapuluwa, Kandy.

NIMALADASA - A. MIULIN - No. 280/57, Garden City, 3rd Lane, Katubedda.

PERERA - RANJAN - 42/8, Ranhomes, Saasanatilaka Mawatha, Yagodamulla, Kotuboda.

RAMANAYAKE - KUMARI - No. 44, Upananda Mawatha.


REV SISTER MARY THIYAGA PERERA - Good Shepherd Convent Chapal, Nayakakanda.



ROBERTS - NOELINE - No. 396/1, Katugastota Road, Kandy.



SUJATHA JAYASEKERA - 30/7, Katuwawala Gardens, off Katuwawala Road, Maharagama.


VINITHA WIJERATNE - Daivagnarathnakaraya, Melagama, Wadduwa.

WIJEMUNI ANNESLY ERNEST DE SILVA - 842 B, Katagewatte Road, Ragama.

1365 - 01/02/18



In treasured and ever loving memory of Maria Jeyaseeli Emelda
formerly of Vasavilan, Batticaloa and Australia, dearly beloved
wife of Christie Former Public Health Inspector Valaichchenai Batticaloa District
and presently of NSW Australia loving mother of Doctor Jegatheesmanan (chennai) Nilmini,
Sukithini, Asha, Jonathan and Grand Children (Australia) Daughter in law of
Benedict and Daisy Jeganayagam of Batticaloa, Sister in law of Dorothy Emmanuel Australia
Kumar UK late Franco Rexie, late Aquinas Yuvakumar of Batticaloa.

Died First September 2017
May her soul rest in peace.

Loved ones.

Tele Christie 0061296316707
Email felician5@hotmail.com

An appreciation

Dr A J M J B Walalawela
Retired Director of Quarantine Services
Ministry of Health. Srilanka

1950 - 2017

"Nirvana is not the blowing out of the candle.
It is the extinguishing of the flame because the day is come"- Rabindranath Tagore

Walale as he was known to his friends was a charismatic soft spoken young medical student
when we first met him at the Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry & Veterinary Sciences within
the University Campus at Peradeniya on the 18th Jan1972, the date he referred to as the
'jour de gloire' in his editorial for the souvenir published at the Reunion in Oct 2016.

On being awarded his medical degree the young Dr Walawela was posted to the General Hos-pital
Badulla where he undertook his early training followed by a tenure as a medical officer at Minipe
and then at Deltota in the central province. Towards the end of 1983 he travelled to the
Sultanate of Oman for a brief spell as a general practitioner returning to Srilanka
betrothed to Nilani Ratnayake, a school teacher whom he married on the 19th Sept 1985.

Attracted to the speciality of medical administration he took up the position of Deputy
Director at the University Hospital at Peradeniya serving the people of Kandy his place of birth.
He took special responsibility for the education of those professions allied to medicine especially
the area of nursing. He was then promoted as the Regional Director of Medical Services for the
Monaragela district ensuring the smooth functioning of government institu-tions. He was a skilful
and fair but a firm administrator with an affable personality whose admirable qualities held him
in good stead to uphold the ethos contained within the national policy of providing a

free medical service to the people of SriLanka.

He was subsequently appointed by the Ministry of Health as the Director of National
Quarantine Services taking charge of preventive health with the main focus on the ports
of entry playing a vital role at the peak of the Avian A HIN1 flu epidemic. He represented
Srilanka at the ASEAN conference held in Manilla in 2009 in the Philippines; chairing some
of the plenaries addressing the challenges posed by the Avian flu epidemic in the South
East Asian region. He was also called in to manage the crisis that followed the scandal in
connection with the importation of 'digestive' biscuits from India around the same time.

Walale retired from the national health service in 2010 at the compulsory retirement age of 60.
Being a workaholic he was unable to decline an offer as the company medical director for a
private sector establishment, the Ihala Kothmale Plant, based in Talawakalle where he spent
the next two years by which time he has spent most of his working life serving the nation away
from Kandy where his family was based. Failing health at this stage meant that he was unable

to continue with this job. He returned to Kandy to spend his remaining days at Katugastota
in his family home with his wife and children.

Jayananda Bandara Walalawela was born on the 09th of November 1950 in Kandy to the late
Mr and the late Mrs Jayasekera. He was one of six children. Mr Jayasekera was a direct
descendant of Dingirirala who dwelling in the village of Walalawela in the Hangurangetha
district rebelled along with Puran Appu & Gongale Godabanda fighting the foreign domi-nance
by the British Raj in the mid eighteenth century

He received his primary education in Kandy at Vidyartha College moving on to St Sylvester's
with academic achievements at both schools. Walale entered the University of Ceylon as it was
then called in 1972 opting to read medicine at the historic and scenic Paradeniya campus.

A very modest man of ethical principles focussed on simple living he defied many of his
contemporaries during the 1983 civil unrest and the ensuing turmoil often referred to as the black July,
treating the victims of violence with compassion no matter which ethnic back-ground they belonged to!
Something his son Niluksha recalls with pride.

An avid reader, a linguist with an aptitude for Sinhala, English and French, Walale was a great admirer
and follower of the late Prof Ediriweera Sarathchandra, the renowned playwright and dramatist.
Gifted with a liberal mind and incisive analytical skills he was a caring father and a loving
husband never prescriptive towards his children. Daughter Cha-malka reminisces how Walale
discouraged them from sitting their year 5 scholarship exams for he believed that children
should learn but not be compelled to compete at this young age; a view that is shared by many
contemporary western educationalists promoting equality.

Walale was a grateful servant of his alma maters actively contributing to the OBA functions.
He had an interest in Tennis, Rugby and Cricket volunteering as a sports medical officer to various
organisations. He accompanied the SAARC team to India in the early nineties as its medical officer.
He wrote to the news papers in his spare time and also organised several blood donation camps.

Although a quite & an unassuming introvert he was a raconteur of class fondly remembered by his
batch mates as the great networker who brought them together to Kandy in October 2016 to celebrate
a reunion 40 years since graduation, a remarkable feat given that this batch is now scattered all
around the globe. Many of his friends will recall the trouble he took to
attend the event with Nilani despite his poor health for he wanted to be among us celebrating the big day.
Little did we realise that it was going to be our last meeting in person!

A nominal Buddhist but with an altruistic attitude towards humanity,
Dr Walalawela's legacy could be described in the words of Martin Luther King Jr who
once said "The quality, not the longevity, of ones' life is what is important"

May his soul rest in peace.

Dr Jayananda Bandara Walalawela was called to rest on the 25th Dec 2017 and is survived by his son Niluksha,
daughter Chamalka and wife Nilani.

Dr Chandra Abrew Dr Gamini Jayasekera Dr Nanda Wahalawatte Dr Sathi Ariyanayagam

Obituary notice

Dr Kamala Gomez
(nee Abeywickrema)

Dearly beloved wife of Gaspar, loving mother of Shehana and Nicola,
mother in law of Stefano, passed away peacefully in Chichester, West Sussex
on the 22nd January 2018 after an illness bravely endured.

Her funeral will take place at the Chichester Crematorium, Westhampnett Road, PO19 7UH
on Wednesday 7th February at 11-00 am followed by luncheon refreshments
at the nearby Chichester Park Hotel, Westhampnett PO19 7QL.

Funeral Directors : Dillistone & Wraights, PO19 6SG
contact dillistone&wraights@dignityfunerals.co.uk or telephone 01243839777
for floral tributes or donations to the Alzheimer's society

She will be sadly missed by family, medical colleagues and friends worldwide

ABEYPALA - HERATH M. - 74/4, 1st Cross Lane, Off Templer Road, Mt. Lavinia.

AMARASINGHE - UPALI - No. 322, "Kusumpaya", Pita Kotte, Kotte.

AMY DORA D' ALWIS (nee DISSANAYAKE). - "Wasala Walawwa", Palolpitiya, Thihagoda.

BUDDHADASA, WICKRAMASINGHE - 262/G/4, First Lane, Shanthipura, Thalawathugoda.

CHAPMAN - ELVIN - No. 3/6 B, Pinwatta Road, Dehiwala.

EBENEZER - PASTOR DAVID SELVARAJ - 1/25A Farm Road, Mattakkuliya, Colombo 15.

FERNANDO - MAXIMUS GUNASIRI - 36/3, Pannala Road, Dankotuwa.

GUNASEKERA - NEELAGI ILLUKUBURA - 483, Bauddhaloka Mawatha, Colombo 08.

HEWAGE - ANNA FLORENCE - No. 116, Kotahena Street, Colombo 13.

KANAGASABAPATHY - KATHIRESU - 48, Dr E. A. Cooray Mawatha, Colombo 06.

KUSUMA SENERATH - 94, Ratnapura Road, Ingiriya.

MAHENDRAN - Mrs. MALLIKADEVI - 115 D. S. Senanayake Mawatha, Colombo 8.

MARY PUVANESWARY ARUMAINAYAGAM - 52/21, Old Kalmunai Road, Kallady, Batticaloa.


PERERA - A.G.O.H. - No:74/4A, Manimmulla Lane 2, Maha Ambalangoda.

PERERA - DR C.S.M. (STANLEY) - No. 1231, Biyagama Road, Kelaniya.

REV. Sr. DOREEN - Holy Family Provincialate, 90/1, Rosmead Place, Colombo - 7.

SENANAYAKE - DON NERVIN - No. 260/2, St. Francis Lane, Dalugama, Kelaniya.

SRIYANTHI RAJAPAKSE HEWAWISSA - 18/2, Abraham Place, Nikape, Dehiwala.

VIOLET SAPARAMADU - No. 50, Sea Street, Negombo.

WICKRAMASINGHE - Mr. BUDDHADASA - 262/G/4, First Lane, Shanthipura, Thalawathugoda.

WIJESEKERA - IRENE - 373E, Temple Road, Thalawathugoda.

WIJETUNGE - PRIYAAN - 23/192, 6th Lane, Dharmapala Mawatha, Thalawathugoda.

WILLIAMS - NAGESWARI (EASU) - 19, Mansion Place, off Old Chilaw Road, Negombo.

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