There are times when it saddens me to write a blog post. This is one of them.
It has been just a year since Veronica Ng and I interviewed 70’s legend Abdul Latif Ibrahim at Istana Budaya, on the set of the musical Terima Kasih Cinta. His death at the National Heart Institute (IJN) in Kuala Lumpur on Monday of a heart attack due to complications from diabetes and pneumonia is a huge loss for the local entertainment industry.
His sister, singer Datuk Khatijah Ibrahim said he passed away at 6.10pm surrounded by his family, including his wife Masriah Mahadan, 57, and their two children Mohd Hazriq, 35, and Haznally, 34.
Apart from singing, Latif also acted in 15 films, including "Hapuslah Air Mata Mu" in 1976, "Dendang Perantau" (1979), "Sumber Ilhamku" (1979), "Bintang Pujaan" (1981) and "Senja Merah" (1982). His last film was 4 Madu directed by A. Razak Mohaideen which was screened in 2010.
Latif hails from Alor Gajah and rose to fame in the 1970s, best known for his romantic pop songs such as Hati Yang Belum Bebas, Mengenang Dikau Kembali, Nora, Mengharap Kasihmu, Mengenang Dikau Kembali as well as Di Bawah Satu Bendera.
In his heyday Latif made quite an impression on his female fans with his rugged good looks and was often compared to Puerto Rican star Erik Estrada of "Chips" fame, to whom he bore a striking resemblance.
His daughter, Haznally Latif, 34, said her father was caring and always took care of the family. In fact during my interview Latif had disclosed that he had opened a small restaurant in Pantai Dalam for his family to run, and was considering making a comeback to the entertainment with his role in the musical Terima Kasih Cinta.
More than 200 people, including veteran artistes, Datuk Aziz Sattar and Datuk Malek Noor attended the burial at the AU4 Muslim Cemetery in Taman Keramat.
Here's our interview with him
Rest In Peace, Latif.