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A man who underwent surgery at National University Hospital (NUH) in Singapore to donate part of his liver to his former primary school teacher, jokingly revealed that he once hated her.
Jerome Chin, a Malaysian medical graduate, said Ms Leong Fong Peng used to discipline him regularly, although he admitted that he was "not one of her best students", reports The Star.
"She took her cane everywhere and used to discipline me quite a lot," said the 25-year-old, as he recounted the time when he was taught by Ms Leong at SJK(C) Kong Min in Kuantan from 2003 to 2004.
Mr Chin later realised that Ms Leong had done that out of love and concern for her students.
"I hated the teachers who hit me, but after I left school, I started to appreciate those who paid attention to me," he said.
Mr Chin got wind of Ms Leong's medical condition in July from her daughter, Krystal Teh, who was also his primary school friend.
At the time, the situation appeared harrowing because no livers were suitable despite eight volunteers offering to donate theirs.
While waiting for his housemanship to commence, Mr Chin told Ms Teh that he was willing to be a donor.
His father was initially against it but relented after Mr Chin used his medical knowledge to explain the situation.
"I told him I studied this, I know what I'm doing and it will be fine. I think my being in the medical field helped convince him," said Mr Chin, who studied medicine in China before graduating in 2017.
He said he has recovered from a temporary case of jaundice after the surgery and that his liver is expected to grow back fully in three months.
Although he donated 67 per cent of his liver, Mr Chin insisted he was not a hero.
"I was just the right person at the right place at the right time; I have done what I could," he said.
After the transplant surgery on Sep 6 that was conducted by the NUH, Ms Leong was coping well until she was admitted again to the intensive care unit for coughing up blood.
The bill for her treatment amounted to almost $300,000 and she had been raising funds to cover the cost, with $90,000 outstanding.
However, due to the recent complications, the amount needed is expected to increase, but Nirvana Foundation has made a contribution of RM100,000 (S$33,000).
Check out Mr Chin's interview below.