KAMPUNG KUANTAN, Nov 12 — We love stories of local heroes... those selfless people who take care of others in need. But what happens when a hero becomes the one in need?
Ali Mohammed, 66, is well known in his village because he has dedicated his life to helping others regardless of their religion or colour of their skin.
Manimala (right) taking Ali Mohammed for a walk in his wheelchair. — Picture by Sayuti Zainudin
He used to work as a land broker and has helped a few of his friends and acquaintances get back on their feet whenever trouble knocked on their front doors.
P. Manimala, 56, who is one of Ali’s neighbours, was one of those Ali helped. She hurt her back after an accident and Ali came to the rescue.
He would take Manimala to the hospital and wait for hours with her. He also helped nurse her back to health and even paid her medical expenses.
“If it wasn’t for Ali, I would already be dead,” she said.
Manimala added that Ali never missed giving out “Duit Raya” to her family during Deepavali as they struggled to make ends meet.
When Ali suffered a stroke and was unable to manage by himself — his wife died a few years back — Manimala decided to take care of Ali by bringing him back to her home.
Ali Mohammed spends his days in the living room of Manimala’s house in Kampung Kuantan, Kuala Selangor. — Picture by Sayuti Zainudin
Manimala said it’s her turn now to “repay” Ali. She cooks his favourite dishes such as idli and traditional Malay rendang dishes.
Ali spends his days in Manimala’s living room which makes it easier for Manimala and her family to attend to him.
Manimala’s family and friends are building Ali his own room which is an extension at the side of the house.
Manimala and some friends are building Ali his own room which is an extension at the side of her house. — Picture by Sayuti Zainudin
Her wish is for Ali to be able to get back on his feet and celebrate Deepavali with them. If not this year, then the next.