A takeaway owner’s final journey will go past the door of the business which was his “heart and soul” as he is laid to rest following his sudden death.
George Ng died just days before he was due to celebrate his 61st birthday, collapsing as he played music during a performance of the Chinese dragon group he and son Nigel, 25, set up.
It is believed he suffered a brain haemorrhage during the celebration for fellow members of the North East’s Chinese community, with medics at the Freeman Hospital unable to save him.
George, who lived in Fulwell, ran the Fountain Garden takeaway, in Queen’s Crescent, Barnes, with his family, with his loved ones pledging to continue the business he helped make a success.
He came to Sunderland in 1973 alongside his dad Jimmy and brother Danny, and they set up the Lotus Garden, in High Street West.
We will be carrying on the business he worked hard to build up as his legacy and we are proud to carry on his work.Nigel Ng
They arrived on Wearside after moving from the outskirts of Hong Kong, where the family farmed and struggled to make ends meet, as they looked to build themselves a brighter future.
George, who was married to Peng, 50, and also dad to Julie, 32, went on to set up the Fountain Garden in 1993 when his father retired, with Danny moving to Preston to launch his own business.
He helped train up other chefs in his kitchen.
His funeral cortege will pass the takeaway at around noon on Thursday, October 11, as it makes its way to a Buddhist ceremony at Pennywell Community Centre.
A burial will then take place at Mere Knolls Cemetery, in Seaburn, a short distance from his family home in Fulwell, at around 2.30pm.
Julie said: “We will be passing by the takeaway because that was my Dad’s heart and soul.
“We will be carrying on the business he worked hard to build up as his legacy and we are proud to carry on his work.”
The Fountain Garden has been closed since George’s death, but his loved ones plan to reopen on Monday, October 15.
Nigel was performing alongside his dad as part of the Chinese Unicorn Dance group at the Hilton Gateshead when he fell ill.
Nigel said: “My dad was very popular and was famous for his salt and pepper chips, people always talk about them when they come in.
“People on our Facebook page have been saying how sad they are and talking about how they would come in to have a bit of craic with him when they came in for their takeaway.
“He was a real family man. We will miss him so much.
“His death was really sudden and we were part of a festival party when it happened.
“He would teach and coach people and we would do that together.
“My dad was really popular among the Chinese community and he would always try and educate people, whether it was our customers or others he met.”