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A Teacher and Her Student

21 May 2013

She was just a primary school teacher, and she had retired for decades, and even many of her students have retired from work. Yet when she passed away at the age of 92 in early May, the news promoted outpouring of grief among many Chinese people. True, she was an excellent teacher, but there were and are tens of thousands of excellent teachers in China, why is she the one of few cherished so dearly by so many, with her name certainly going down history as a noteworthy figure in China's 20th and 21st century?

Here is the reason: she was the teacher of Bo Xilai, the antagonist to the Western powers, especially the Wall Street and Washington, and the challenger of China's treacherous interest groups, former Premier Wen Jiabao and current Premier Li Keqiang in particular.

Bo Xilai and his teacher Guan Minqing

In fact, she was more than just being Bo Xilai's teacher. Since the boy's mother was pushed off a running train in the early chaotic years of the Culture Revolution by a violent organisation called the East Is Red of which Wen Jiabao was an active member, she became her student's surrogate mother and spiritual mentor for the rest of her life.

After Bo Xilai's wife Gu Kailai was detained on a framed murder charge of a British citizen and Bo Xilai himself was placed under house arrest, at a formidable age of 91, Guan Minqing (关敏卿) went to his home to give him some much needed support and encouragement.

And that was their last meeting.

The event of the past year clearly took a heavy tool on her health. She wasn't able to wait to see his most proud student walking out of his prison, and died as a concerned teacher and an anxious mother. But one thing is certain: her name will be favourably linked with a national hero, and forever.

The following are what some Chinese said about Bo Xilai and his teacher immediately after they learned the news of her death:

怅寥廓1:Thank you Madam Guan, for being the mentor to a national leader who put the life of his own and his family on the line in his pursuit of common prosperity for Chinese people.

wxjlice: Although I never met you in person, but I'm deeply touched by your story ... I forward my sincere condolence.

梦回情关微博:Those who have a chance to attend her funeral, please help us say goodbye to her.

台北县令:Pray for her soul in her journey after this life. We'll still be your students in our next life.

人民不是小白鼠-9:I light a candle for her.

诗评天下:For her contribution in helping bringing up a national hero, she will be remembered forever.

苏青城的微博:This is not the end. Once Bo Xilai is cleared of the false charges and return to his rightful position, the nation will have a celebration and his teacher will be informed of the good news wherever she might be.

戴诚红歌司令兵:Thank you for offering a wonderful mentorship to a man who becomes a true Communist.

cqzh12124: People of Chongqing thank Teacher Guan for looking after Bo Xilai for so long. We miss him.

有话说不出2013:Madam Guan, I'll see you off for my hero Bo Xilai.

小树丫er: Would Teacher Guan live a bit longer if Bo Xilai were not framed up? He visited his teacher every year before he lost his freedom.

开门又见喜:A great student from a great teacher.

我爱我的家乡瓦房店:To remember the contribution that Mr Bo Xilai made to our Dalian, I named my son after him. I hope my son will become a man just like Bo Xilai whose broad heart is connected to the entire nation not just himself and his family.

郑州任权:I never thought I would witness a sinister plot against a national hero, tales like this we normally only learn from history books.

元帅栽的红星杨:from now on my China Dream is to become a teacher just like Madam Guan, and help my students become someone just like Bo Xilai.

恰帕斯2022: Teacher Guan, your best student hasn't disappointed you and his people. He is like a white lily standing in a muddy pool.

西部雄鹰v18: Madam Guan, we promise we'll carry out the task that you haven't got time to accomplish.

悠鹏致远:How regret that she hasn't got a chance to see the day when he is freed from prison and restored to his position, and how sad that he isn't able to say goodbye to her at her funeral.

王铮: 好羡慕薄,对所有的人都没有留下遗憾……有些机会永远不会再来……他是上天送给中国人的礼物……关老师,请您在天之灵保佑他.

I admire Bo Xilai, who makes all people around proud of him ... some opportunities may never reoccur again .... Bo Xilai is a gift sent to China by history .... Teacher Guan, please protect him from the other side.

A number of wreathes at the funeral were presented by people from Chongqing, Beijing and other parts of China who knew about her after her link to Bo Xilai was revealed last year.

Four men, among many, who were total strangers to Madam Guan, bowed to her portrait at the funeral as a way to thank her for looking after Bo Xilai like a mother would do to her son.

Bo Xilai's classmates at their teacher's funeral.


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