Admirers remember Mao’s death

By Zhang Han Source:Global Times Published: 2018/9/9 23:28:39

Devotees reflect on 42nd anniversary of the late leader’s passing

People line up outside the Chairman Mao Memorial Hall to pay their respects on the 42nd anniversary of his death. Photo: Zhang Han/GT

The Chairman Mao Memorial Hall, located on the south end of Tiananmen Square, extended its viewing hours on Sunday to accommodate visitors coming to commemorate the death of late Chinese leader Mao Zedong.

Usually open only in the morning, the memorial hall remained open in the afternoon on Sunday to visitors from all over China who came to commemorate the 42nd anniversary of Mao's death on Sunday.

An elderly couple from Beijing Fangshan district became emotional following their first visit to the hall.

Lu Jin celebrated his 71st birthday on Sunday while visiting the memorial hall, together with his 72-year-old wife Qu Shuying and their granddaughter who is a college student.

"I remember my colleagues burst into tears after hearing Mao die 42 years ago," Qu told the Global Times. "I have been dreaming of coming here for a long time and I almost cried when I saw [the body of] Chairman Mao."

A man surnamed Li, from Central China's Hubei Province, came to Tiananmen Square dressed in black to pay his respect to Mao.

"This is the third time I came here," Li told the Global Times, adding that on his previous visits the hall was closed.

 After passing a checkpoint, Li hurried to the hall entrance, where people of all ages lined up and waited to enter.

Another man surnamed Yang held his infant son as he stood beside his wife in the long line on the east side of the hall.

"Tiananmen Square is a must-see and we decided to visit the memorial hall. We are lucky that it's open to the public this afternoon otherwise we would have missed it."

Asked why they decided to visit the hall on this day, Lu said, "We would not have such a happy life without him."

 "It was worth the two hours we spent on the bus and subway because my grandparents are happy to visit the memorial hall on such a beautiful day," said Lu's granddaughter.

Many Chinese media, including the WeChat account affiliated with the People's Liberation Army posted articles in memory of Mao, saying "he was a lighthouse, directing our way forward."

People from all over China commemorated  Mao's death in different ways.

In Jingzhou, Central China's Hubei Province, people held a show on Saturday where Mao's poems were recited and songs and dances about China's revolutionary history were performed. 

In Mao's hometown Shaoshan, Central China's Hunan Province, local residents dedicated flower baskets to the bronze statue of the chairman. Thousands of tourists attended the ceremony.

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