“Please, no more forwards from me. I am dead.” If Shahar were to send his regular forwards at 5am this morning that’s probably what he would say. Most would have been shocked and saddened to receive news of his sudden demise this morning instead of his legendary forwards.
Shahar and I became friends in 1993 when I represented Lever Brothers on the council of Malaysian Advertisers Association. He later became the President of MAA and I was his VP.
We also represented Malaysia on the general body of Asian Federation of Advertising Associations (AFAA). We worked very closely on many projects, events and industry challenges. While working and travelling together over the years I got to know him well. We collected many memories.
A man with deep compassion, Shahar was a feelings man and he was guided by his heart. He always put people first. Under his leadership MAA started contributing a part of the Ad Ball proceeds to various charities.
Every successful event that MAA organized was proceeded with a thank you party. A gourmet par excellence. A large hearted man, he was fond of jazz and cigars. There was never a dull moment in his presence.
As I saw him for the last time at his home this morning I felt the great loss but also huge gratitude for all the moments I had with him in this lifetime.
My message on his tombstone would be:
Here lies Shahar Noor who in his life made people feel good in his presence. He loved his family, friends and many with deep passion and compassion.
Shahar Noor will not be missed because his stories, jokes and forwards inspired everyone always.
He was an officer and a gentleman.
Shahar Noor passed away peacefully at 71 and was buried after Zuhur at Kiara cemetery surrounded by his family and friends.
“Daddy has been a strong influence not only in the advertising and marketing industry but also at home. He will always be remembered for his charisma, wit and humility,” said his daughter Nizwani
“Most remember him as an influential ad man, I know him as the love of my life. He will be missed deeply,” added his wife Hajjah Kalsom.
He leaves behind wife Hajjah Kalsom Ismail, and two daughters who both followed in his footsteps entering the world of marketing and advertising, Nizwani Shahar, co-chief executive of Ogilvy Malaysia and Nizfaraz Shahar, business director at IPG.
Several people close to him also came forward to pay tribute to the advertising legend. Datuk Borhanuddin Osman, director themed attractions and resorts and hotels said;
“Innalillahi wainnailaihi rojiun. Arwah Haji Shahar Noor, a man who does not know nor show any anger and chooses to smile at all times. An industry man and loves what he does. He will send personal notes to people close to him and without fail his morning greetings… except today 3 Oct 2019. It was heartbreaking to hear news from a close friend of ours, Christie Leo and confirmed by his cousin, Haji Jamil. I joined him a couple of times at the mosque near to his office. The very same spot. I will miss the eating places we explore together. As I speak miss him so so dearly already. May Allah bless his soul.
DRB Hicom Head of Group strategic communications had this to say about the late advertising maestro;
“As I described him to my daughter this morning, Shahar was a man of few words, but when he spoke it was always meaningful. He was careful not to hurt people’s feelings, yet he was always professional in delivering his work. He will be missed, especially his daily quotes which he sends to me religiously as early as 4.30am but always before 6am. I should have noticed something was amiss today when there was no message from him.”
His nephew, Syed Mohammed Idid, head of corporate, community and public engagement, PLUS Malaysia Bhd had this to say of his beloved uncle;
“My uncle was a well loved personality among the media and Communications fraternity. He was also a mentor of sorts. Sadly we were supposed to have a dimsum lunch together on Oct 1st but I had an outstation business trip. We last saw each other during YB Gobind’s talk on press freedom and combating fake news last week. Now I am going to miss his Subuh WhatsApp taskirah. May Allah pardon and forgive all his sins and place him in Jannah Firdaus.
Datuk Kadir Jasin media and communications adviser to the Prime Minister had this to say about him, “He represented what late Marshall McLuhan described as ‘the medium is the message.’ When he was working as the PR man for National Panasonic, his name was synonymous with the brand he represented.
SP Lee creative director of SearchGuru said of Shahar;
“Shahar was one of my first clients who over the years became a good friend. Warm, generous, always smiling, I will miss our conversations which almost always would be over a meal of fish head curry or nasi kandar. I am deeply saddened to think he has left us. Till we meet again, my friend.”
Astro Media Sales group director media TH Chong said, “Hj Shahar has always been a welcoming gentleman and a great teacher. His willingness to impart experience and teaching was inspiring. He shall be missed.