Badminton great Indra Gunawan was laid to rest at Heroes Plaza inside the San Diego Hills Memorial Park and Funeral Homes in Karawang, West Java, on Thursday.
Indra’s wife, Dewi Mirida Japin, was joined by around 50 of the family’s close relatives and friends, some of them from the badminton community, including former national shuttlers Lilik Sudarwati and Hariyanto Arbi.
Indra passed away at Pantai Indah Kapuk Hospital on Sunday, after losing a two-year battle with cancer.
“He was not only a good coach, but he was also a responsible father,” Indra’s son, Thomas Gunawan, said in the eulogy. “He worked hard for his family. And he never complained about his illness since the first time he found out about it.”
As a national player, Indra brought pride to the country with his success in international competitions. He won a gold medal at the 1970 Asian Games and represented Indonesia in the 1970 and 1973 editions of the Thomas Cup.
As a coach, Indra guided the careers of several world-class shuttlers, such as Hariyanto Arbi, Hendrawan, Ardy B. Wiranata, Joko Supriyanto, Hermawan Susanto and Fung Permadi. He also helped Indonesia win its first Olympic gold medal, after his protege, Alan Budikusuma, won the men’s singles championship at the 1992 Games in Barcelona.
Hariyanto remembered Indra as a player and coach who loved his sport.
“He even had the time to share his thoughts about our Sudirman team this year,” said Hariyanto, the 1995 World Champion.
“That’s how dedicated he was. That’s how attached he was to the sport. Losing a person as great as he was, he will definitely be missed,” he added.
As a way of giving back to Indra and his family, former national players will auction off some of their rackets from the Indonesia Open Super Series on June 16-21 at Istora Gelora Bung Karno Senayan, Jakarta.
Opening bids are pegged at Rp 20 million, with the proceeds going to Indra’s family.
World No. 1 Lee Chong Wei of Malaysia, who was also coached by Indra, will participate in the auction by putting one of his rackets up for sale.