It is with heavy heart that the management of Pattaya Mail Media Group announces the peaceful passing away of Boonlue Chatree, our most prolific and fearless crime reporter on April 6, 2023 at the age of 67.
Boonlue joined the Pattaya Mail as a crime reporter 30 years ago when we were in our infancy. His passion was reporting crime stories, which he did all his life.
Boonlue was known amongst his colleagues not to mention the local police as the “fearless reporter”. He spent every night sitting at the Pattaya police station, ever ready to rush out with the cops to get the story first-hand and the best shots of the crime scene.
Boonlue did not miss anything. Thieves, street fights, car accidents, gun-fights, domestic and civil violence, and murders. At daybreak, Boonlue would rush to the Pattaya Mail office where he would be seen bashing away at his old typewriter churning out the crime news of the night. He would sneak a wee nap at his desk after submitting his “hot news” to the editor.
Later on, when our company became a little more sophisticated and could afford it, we got a computer for each of our reporters. Boonlue learned how to use one, though at times he would get frustrated just like all of us, when things went wrong such as the computer crashes or the story that he had been working on just disappears from the face of the screen.
Boonlue was loved by everyone in Pattaya Mail. The young reporters looked up to him and sought his guidance and advice on a daily basis. The staff in the other departments called him “Na Lua” or Uncle Boonlue. He was a true and trusted uncle, brother and friend to us and was ever ready to lend a helping hand when we needed it.
He was a tough reporter with sound morals and ethics. He did not tolerate the unethical things that happen in both the private and public sector. He loathed bad policemen and corrupt government officials, which would reflect in his reporting. Most times the editor would have to tone down his hard-hitting investigative stories lest we step on some touchy toes.
Boonlue worked every day until the end of his life. Even when he was ill and knew that things didn’t look good, and his days were numbered, he kept on working and submitted crime stories every day. His was unwavering true love and dedication for his profession.
Rest in peace dear friend. We miss you already. If reincarnation be real, we wish and pray that we will meet and work together at the Pattaya Mail again in the next life.