80-year-old woman found decomposing in Holland Drive flat after not being seen for a week

Isabelle Liew
The Straits Times
Mar 27, 2023

An 80-year-old woman’s decomposing body was found in her Housing Board flat on Sunday after a neighbour noticed a foul smell from the unit.

The woman, a retired teacher who lived alone, was friendly and had a good relationship with her neighbours, residents told Chinese-language newspaper Shin Min Daily News.

A spokesman for the police said they were alerted to a case of unnatural death at Block 11 Holland Drive at 1.55pm on Sunday, and the elderly woman was found lying motionless in the unit.

A resident who declined to be named said she returned home to find several police officers outside the woman’s unit. A locksmith opened the door at around 3pm.

“I hadn’t seen her for a week. I thought she was away and didn’t turn on the lights at night,” the resident told Shin Min.

“Everyone called her ‘teacher’, as she used to teach at a nearby primary school. Every evening when she went for dinner, she would stop and chat with us.”

The resident said the woman’s next-door neighbour called the police due to the putrid smell.

The body was removed from the unit at around 5pm.

The resident added that the woman, who was unmarried, once said she was born in 1943.

A 70-year-old resident who wanted to be known only as Mr Hong said the woman had lived there for 40 years and everyone knew her well.

Other residents told Shin Min that the woman used to live with her elder sister until the latter died. According to them, the sister’s children never visited her.

The police said they do not suspect foul play. Investigations are ongoing.

The Straits Times

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