ACCIDENT SO SEVERE FAMILY COULD NOT RECOGNIZE VICTIM

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The husband and son of the elderly female pedestrian — who was killed in an accident involving a taxi along West Coast Drive on Sep 27 — had difficulty identifying her body due to the severity of her injuries. The 67-year-old woman, known as Madam Xu Bao, had left her HDB flat to shop for groceries in the morning when she was run over by a taxi.

Police said they were alerted to the accident at 6.27 am. The victim was found motionless and pronounced dead by paramedics at the scene. A 59-year-old male taxi driver was arrested for causing death by a negligent act.

Mdm Xu’s only son, 38-year-old Mr Yang, said that his mother would leave the house at about 6 am daily to exercise, then buy vegetables and breakfast from the market. She usually reached home at around 7 am. On the day of the accident, Mr Yang’s father had gone downstairs to look for the victim when she did not come home. Although he heard that there had been an accident, he did not go to the scene to find out more, due to superstitions that it was taboo. Instead, he returned home to continue waiting.

At around 9 am when the victim still had not come home, Mr Yang’s father went back downstairs. This time, he walked to the accident site and told police officers that he could not find his wife. According to Mr Yang, a warehouse supervisor, investigators spoke to his father and realised the victim’s name matched his wife’s. They asked Mr Yang’s father if he would like to identify the body, but the latter declined to do so. Investigators then handed Mr Yang’s father a photo of the deceased instead.

However, due to the severity of the victim’s injuries, Mr Yang’s father was unable to recognise his wife. As such, he told police officers that the deceased was not his wife. Mr Yang’s father subsequently called him to come to the scene, but he too, was unable to identify the deceased until later.

Mr Yang said that his parents had been married for more than 40 years and had lived in their West Coast flat for over 30 years. Mr Yang, who is already married, had moved out earlier in June. He said his father is still unable to accept Mdm Xu’s death and despite putting on a brave front, would secretly cry at night.

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