Nasrulhudin Najumudin had just gotten a job with transport operator SMRT in January and was looking forward to the next season in his life, his cousins told 938LIVE.
Less than three months later, the 26-year-old was struck by a train while undergoing on-the-job training. The accident killed his co-worker 24-year-old Muhammad Asyraf Ahmad Buhari as well.
"Nasrul was a very jovial person, so we always had a lot of laughter when we were around him ... He was the light of any party," his cousin Amalina Radwan said on Tuesday (Mar 22).
"I grew up with him. We were in the same primary school and in the same class," Ms Amalina said.
"It's really sad because for a lot of us, we were very happy for him when he got this new job. I am sure he will be very missed," she added.
WE WERE HEARTBROKEN: NASRUL'S COUSIN
Mr Nasrul's other cousin Ridzwan Hakim recounted the moment he found out about the tragedy.
"A little bit after breakfast, we got the call that one of our relatives passed away. It was quite heartbreaking for all of us," Mr Ridzwan said. "When we heard the news, they didn't release the names at first. All we knew was that two people passed away. We were hoping that it wasn't him."
Mr Nasrul's eldest brother, Nasrifudin, told 938LIVE that the news was first conveyed to his father and second brother, who are both employees of SMRT.
"There was internal news within SMRT. My father and second brother, as employees, got to know it while they were at work. They then told us, we were all shocked."
Mr Nasrifudin said his brother's body will be brought home on Wednesday morning and rites will be carried out at a nearby mosque before the burial.
WE HAD JUST MET YESTERDAY: ASYRAF'S CHILDHOOD FRIEND
Mr Asyraf's childhood friend Sulaiman Mustafa, 24, expressed shock at the news that his friend had died in Tuesday's accident. Speaking to Channel NewsAsia, he said Tuesday was Mr Asyraf's first time out on-site.
"I didn't expect him to be one of the two dead people. We just met yesterday," Mr Sulaiman said.
Mr Sulaiman, who has known Mr Asyraf since they were both 11 years old, said Mr Asyraf was "cool and humble". "He is a perfectionist," he added.
According to SMRT, both victims were part of a technical team that were on the walkway beside the train tracks to investigate a reported alarm from a condition monitoring device for signalling equipment. Permission had been granted for them to access the track, SMRT Trains' managing director Lee Ling Wee said at a press conference on Tuesday.
The public transport operator added that a supervisor has been walking in front of both victims before the accident happened. Why the tragedy happened despite the following of protocols will be the subject of investigations, said SMRT CEO Desmond Kuek. Police are also investigating the incident.