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Endon Mahmood : biography

24 December 1940 - 20 October 2005

Tun Endon Mahmood Ambak (24 December 1940 – 20 October 2005) was the first wife of the 5th Prime Minister of Malaysia, Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi. She died from breast cancer on 20 October 2005.

She was also known as Kak Endon.

Fighting breast cancer

Endon underwent a radical mastectomy on 18 April 2002, which was followed by 33 sessions of radiation and a series of physiotherapy sessions at St. John’s. Endon discovered she had breast cancer in 2003 while her twin sister Noraini who had earlier been diagnosed with the disease died in January 2003. Endon later left for St. John’s Medical Centre in Los Angeles, California for treatment, and again in June this year for Abraxane chemotherapy, which has yet to be introduced to Malaysia. Endon later received further chemotherapy treatment in the United States and returned to Malaysia on October 2, 2005. She was later brought home to Seri Perdana to be with her family after spending two weeks in Putrajaya Hospital.

On 20 October 2005, Endon died after a long battle with breast cancer. She died at 7.55 a.m. The funeral was conducted at the Prime Minister's residence and the Putra Mosque (where the funeral prayers are conducted), both in Putrajaya. Endon was buried at the Muslim cemetery in Taman Selatan, Precinct 20, Putrajaya.

Social contributions

Endon is noted for her contributions to traditional fabric art such as the batik and songket. For example, she launched Campaigns and exhibitions such as the "Batik Extravaganza" which was held in early December 2003 and the Malaysian Batik Movement, "Creation For The World". She was also a patron of the theatre.

Early life

Endon was born to Datuk Mahmood Ambak, a Malay, and Datin Mariam Abdullah, a Japanese. Endon had ten other siblings, including her twin sister Noraini as well as other sisters Nonni, Rahmah and Aizah. She was born in Klang, Selangor on 24 December 1940.

Endon's father worked as a mining assistant in the Department of Mines, and subsequently transferred to Perak to help oversee about 60 mines in the district of Kampar. Endon spent much of her childhood days in Kampar and received her early education at the Anglo-Chinese School, now Methodist National Type Primary School. She later went on to attend St Mary’s secondary school in Kuala Lumpur.

Endon met Abdullah while she was working at the Federal Establishment Office (now the Public Service Department) in the 1960s and they were married in 1965. Endon later retired from civil service in 1976.

Together with Abdullah, Endon had two children: son Datuk Kamaluddin Abdullah, a business tycoon (married to Azrene) and a daughter, Nori Abdullah (married to Khairy Jamaluddin). Both Abdullah and Endon had four grandchildren.

Awards and recognition

Her Excellency [[Naela Chohan of Pakistan & Datin Sri Endon Mahmood at the Museum of Islamic Heritage, Kuala Lumpur. (1999)]] Universiti Teknologi Malaysia conferred Endon Mahmood the Honorary Doctorate in Humanities in August 2004.

Endon was also conferred the Tun Fatimah Award by the National Council of Women's Organisation on 24 August 2004 for her service to the community.

Endon had been posthumously conferred the Seri Setia Mahkota Malaysia (SSM) which carries the title 'Tun' on 6 June 2009 in conjunction with the birthday of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong Tuanku Mizan Zainal Abidin

Living octopus

Living octopus

In countries which are located near sea coasts, sea food is an important part of national cuisine