RSIS professors pay tribute to alumnus Heri Oktavian, the commander of sunken Indonesian submarine
SINGAPORE: Faculty at Nanyang Technological University's S Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS) have extended their condolences after the death of an alumnus who was the commander of Indonesia's sunken KRI Nanggala 402 submarine.
Lieutenant Colonel Heri Oktavian was a postgraduate student at RSIS in 2014 and did a Master of Science in Strategic Studies, said the school on Monday (Apr 26).
He had been commander of the KRI Nanggala 402 since April last year, according to Indonesian media.
The submarine went missing while taking part in a torpedo drill in waters north of Bali on Wednesday.
All 53 personnel on board were confirmed dead by the Indonesian military after the sunken submarine was found on Sunday.
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"Heri Oktavian always spoke fondly of his service in the Tentara Nasional Indonesia-Angkatan Laut," said masters programme coordinator Dr Bernard Loo, referring to the Indonesian navy.
"He was a popular student and a strong personality in a class of 54 other strong personalities," said Dr Loo in a LinkedIn post by RSIS.
Lt Col Oktavian had an "unquenchable drive to learn", said Associate Professor Leonard Sebastian, coordinator of the school's Indonesia programme.
"He was also an inspiring figure to his fellow mariners, able to encourage them to strive for greater heights in their studies and their careers.
"He was a caring leader, always supporting the men under his command."
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Lt Col Oktavian had also studied in Germany, and came from a family of police officers, according to Indonesian media.
His father is retired police commissioner Imron Haki, reported digital news outlet Detik.com.
He leaves behind two daughters, reported Kompas.
SINGAPORE LEADERS SEND CONDOLENCES
Singapore President Halimah Yacob and Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on Monday extended their condolences on the loss of lives in the sinking of the submarine.
"On behalf of the people of Singapore, I extend my deepest condolences to the people of Indonesia," said Mdm Halimah in a letter to Indonesia President Joko Widodo.
In a letter to Mr Widodo, Mr Lee extended his "heartfelt condolences" to the families and loved ones of the submarine's crew.