Ray Chan was my first appointment on my first day in Hong Kong in the spring of 2002. Ray was the sales manager for a windchime factory. I had found his factory on the internet before I flew to Hong Kong. I had exchanged emails with him, and now we were meeting for breakfast at the Holiday Inn on Nathan Road in Kowloon where I was staying. Ray was on time, I overslept, but when I got to the lobby he was waiting patiently for me.
A young man in his 20s, Ray was well-spoken, poised, and interested in me, his new customer from the US. After breakfast Ray drove me to his factory showroom in an industrial section of Hong Kong. I selected some windchimes, we agreed on a price, and Ray was to have a sample for me when I returned from Shanghai in about 10-days. He took me to dinner that night, showed me photos of his wife and family, then drove me up Victoria’s Peak for a wonderful view of Hong Kong harbor. We hit it off, and I looked forward to seeing Ray again.
I spent several days in Shanghai, then flew back to Hong Kong on Wednesday. My appointment to see my samples was on Thursday. I called his office and Ray’s associate answered. I asked for Ray. He paused, then said, “Ray is not here. His brother was killed in an auto accident two days ago.” I expressed my sincere sorrow for Ray’s loss and then arranged to come in on Friday instead of Thursday.
I had not expected to see Ray, but he was there waiting for me on Friday when I arrived at his office. I sat down in the showroom with Ray and said, “Ray, I am so sorry to hear that your brother was killed.” Both of us had tears in our eyes as Ray said, “Thank you. He was a student, my younger brother.” Then Ray said, “We are Christians. We believe we will see him, again.”
Sitting in an office in Hong Kong, seven thousand miles from home, I wept with my brother. I have not seen Ray since that day, but we are Christians, and I will see him, again.