Mall explosion victim’s father: I want for nothing else

Tchee looking out from his new house, deep in thought.

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By Nancy Nais

KUCHING, Nov 22: Sometimes the simplest way to shift one’s perspective on life is to have gratitude.

As he has lived long enough to finally own a place to call home, 66-year-old widower Tchee Foh Hin says he doesn’t want anything else anymore.

Tchee, was sitting on his wheelchair in front of the main door of his new house which he recently moved in to last September when DayakDaily paid him a visit yesterday.

He is the father of one of three victims, Kian Jong, who died in the CityOne Megamall gas explosion in December last year.

Tchee now officially owns a three-bedroom single-storey home at the Stampin Resettlement Scheme after a joint effort involving allocations from several elected representatives, the Pakatan Harapan federal government, the Gabungan Parti Sarawak state government, Fire and Rescue Department (Bomba), corporate companies and various individuals who donated materials and money for the construction and furnishing of the house.

Although he is not totally wheelchair bound, Tchee said his body, especially his lower torso, are failing him by the day and he feels weak.

“Only my mind is still very alert. I can speak fluently and I remember things very well. But I have difficulties moving around. With my weak legs, I must be careful whenever I need to get up like going to the bathroom or from lying on my bed,” he said.

Tchee speaking to DayakDaily in his new house.

Tchee is alone at home during the day, as his other son, aged 26, has to work and only returns home in the evening.

“Being alone at home from morning to night can be very lonely. Most of the time I just sit on the wheelchair or lie down on my bed. My fear is falling down and knocking my head because if that happens, I won’t be able to call for help, so I must be careful.”

Except for one kind neighbour from his old house area who comes every day to deliver his lunch, Tchee said no one else visits or looks after him.

Before moving to the new house, he had lived in a dilapidated wooden house nearby with his wife and sons for over 20 years.

There, he has no problem with seeking company as he had many helpful and friendly neighbours who came over to check on him and help him bath everyday.

However, a new house could not be build on that piece of land as it does not belong to him.

Sharing his thoughts with DayakDaily, Tchee said although he is feeling ‘tired’, he is at ease and feels peace.

“Every morning as I wake up, I am struck with how at ‘home’ I feel in this body. That makes me feel at ease, that I am ready to let this body go. I have come to a point where there’s nowhere to go now, but up.

“Owning a land and a house that I had never dreamed of or hoped for, and within that split second of realisation that I have all that now, nothing else seems to matter.” — DayakDaily