Elderly man seeking out missing children
SOCIAL activist Kuan Chee Heng, better known as Uncle Kentang, has appealed to the children of old folk’s home resident Tan Han Hong to contact him to see what can be done in the best interests of the senior citizen.
Kuan recorded a video featuring Tan to highlight his plight, which recently hit social media. Tan is currently a resident of the AK Mega Home located in Kampung Tunku, Petaling Jaya.
From his conversation with Tan – who was slightly slurring due to a mild stroke – it is understood that he has a son and daughter who are residing in Sydney and Melbourne respectively. Tan gave his son’s name as Tan Pui Tuck, and his daughter’s name as Tan Peck Ee.
Kuan explained Tan, a former resident of Aulong, Perak, had become estranged from his children, but was hoping to be able to make amends with them in his twilight years.
In a phone conversation this morning with theSun, Kuan said that he had first encountered Tan while he was hospitalised at HUKM.
“When he went into the hospital, there was no NGOs willing to take care of him,” Kuan said. “They passed him to me and I arranged his stay in the home and have been [sponsoring him] for the past two to three months.”
While there have been messages on social media that claim that Tan’s son had already contacted him from New Zealand, a check with the AK Mega Home showed that this was untrue.
The home’s owner, Dr Andrew, told theSun: “We have not received any calls from his children.
“[Tan] was in HUKM about seven months ago and underwent surgery on his abdomen, and he suffered a stroke while at the hospital.
“Right now, he is a little forgetful, but otherwise in good health.”
Dr Andrew added that Tan’s children may contact the home at 016-2099 435 should they wish to speak to him.
For Kuan, while he has been contacted by people in Australia promising to publicise the search there, he has also yet to receive word from Tan’s children directly.
He said that while he understood that the children may not wish to reconnect with their father, he hopes that due to the man’s advanced age they will at least give him instructions regarding his future care, including in case of his passing.
“For Chinese it is only proper to seek a nod from the son, so if he says that he no longer wants to take care of his father, I will take care of him,” Kuan said. “But I will need [official] permission from the son, as I am not the waris (heir).”
Kuan is appealing to members of the public to help share Tan’s story with their friends and contacts, in hopes that a suitable resolution may be found. Tan remains hopeful that news will eventually reach his children in Australia.