Asia

Singapore's longest-serving president S.R. Nathan dies

  • FILE- In this Aug. 17, 2005 file photo, Singapore's President S.R. Nathan smiles as he speaks to government supporters at the ruling People's Action Party headquarters. Sellapan Ramanathan, Singapore's sixth and longest-serving president, died Monday, Aug. 22, 2016 at age 92, the government announced. Widely known as S.R. Nathan, he was hospitalized in critical condition after suffering a stroke on July 31. It was his second stroke in less than two years.  (AP Photo/Ed Wray, File)

    FILE- In this Aug. 17, 2005 file photo, Singapore's President S.R. Nathan smiles as he speaks to government supporters at the ruling People's Action Party headquarters. Sellapan Ramanathan, Singapore's sixth and longest-serving president, died Monday, Aug. 22, 2016 at age 92, the government announced. Widely known as S.R. Nathan, he was hospitalized in critical condition after suffering a stroke on July 31. It was his second stroke in less than two years. (AP Photo/Ed Wray, File)  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE - In this Friday, March 17, 2006 file photo, Britain's Queen Elizabeth II, left, stands next to Singapore's President S.R. Nathan, right, after a welcome ceremony held during her arrival at the Istana, or presidential palace, in Singapore. Sellapan Ramanathan, Singapore's sixth and longest-serving president, died Monday, Aug. 22, 2016 at age 92, the government announced. Widely known as S.R. Nathan, he was hospitalized in critical condition after suffering a stroke on July 31. It was his second stroke in less than two years. (AP Photo/Wong Maye-e, File)

    FILE - In this Friday, March 17, 2006 file photo, Britain's Queen Elizabeth II, left, stands next to Singapore's President S.R. Nathan, right, after a welcome ceremony held during her arrival at the Istana, or presidential palace, in Singapore. Sellapan Ramanathan, Singapore's sixth and longest-serving president, died Monday, Aug. 22, 2016 at age 92, the government announced. Widely known as S.R. Nathan, he was hospitalized in critical condition after suffering a stroke on July 31. It was his second stroke in less than two years. (AP Photo/Wong Maye-e, File)  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE - In this Wednesday, June. 10, 2009 file photo, President of the Republic of Singapore  S.R. Nathan, left, and his Turkish counterpart Abdullah Gul shake hands as they pose for cameras during welcoming ceremony at the Cankaya Palace in Ankara, Turkey. Sellapan Ramanathan, Singapore's sixth and longest-serving president, died Monday, Aug. 22, 2016 at age 92, the government announced. Widely known as S.R. Nathan, he was hospitalized in critical condition after suffering a stroke on July 31. It was his second stroke in less than two years. (AP Photo/Burhan Ozbilici, File)

    FILE - In this Wednesday, June. 10, 2009 file photo, President of the Republic of Singapore S.R. Nathan, left, and his Turkish counterpart Abdullah Gul shake hands as they pose for cameras during welcoming ceremony at the Cankaya Palace in Ankara, Turkey. Sellapan Ramanathan, Singapore's sixth and longest-serving president, died Monday, Aug. 22, 2016 at age 92, the government announced. Widely known as S.R. Nathan, he was hospitalized in critical condition after suffering a stroke on July 31. It was his second stroke in less than two years. (AP Photo/Burhan Ozbilici, File)  (The Associated Press)

Sellapan Ramanathan, Singapore's sixth and longest-serving president, died Monday at age 92, the government announced.

Widely known as S.R. Nathan, he was hospitalized in critical condition after suffering a stroke on July 31. It was his second stroke in less than two years.

"The late Mr. Nathan passed away peacefully at Singapore General Hospital on Monday," the Prime Minister's Office said in a statement.

Ramanathan served two terms as Singapore's head of state from 1999 to 2011, before being succeeded by Tony Tan Keng Yam.

He held top positions in the civil service and was appointed high commissioner to Malaysia in 1988. From 1990 to 1996, Ramanathan served as Singapore's ambassador to the United States.

Following his stroke in July, accounts of Ramanathan's humble beginnings — he started work without completing his studies to settle family debts — were widely circulated on social media.

"His was a story of how a young boy strove to triumph over his circumstances and make a contribution to society. He held many public service posts, and occupied the highest office in the land," Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said in a Facebook post.

"He was a warm and approachable president who endeared himself to Singaporeans. I remember him as a man guided by a deep sense of duty to the nation. He stepped up each time duty called. He was a true son of Singapore," Lee added.

The Prime Minister's Office said arrangements for the public to pay respects and for the funeral would be announced later.

Ramanathan leaves behind a wife, daughter, son and three grandchildren.