A report from the Straits Times announced the death of local business owner Mr Quek Kiat Siong. His death appeared to be related to the medications he was taking. His family mourned the loss and expressed their admiration for his accomplishments in life, despite his struggles with depression. They have entered an appeal to have the suicide ruling overturned.

Dedication to the Family Business

Mr. Quek Kiat Siong was well-loved by his family and his neighbours. He lived in his flat on Joo Chiat Road for many years, along with his two sisters. Every day at 5:30 a.m., Quek would rise to start the day’s work at his popular shop, Kway Guan Huat Joo Chiat Popiah & Kueh Pie Tie. He made dough for popiah skins and prepared the hot pan. Then he would eat breakfast before doing other chores.

A Struggle with Injury and Depression

In 2009, Mr. Quek suffered a back injury that kept him from lifting heavy things. He had to cut back on his work around the shop, and it affected him deeply. His inability to certain tasks led to depression, anxiety, and insomnia. In 2012, his back pain was so severe he had to go to the hospital, where he was also treated for depression and other mental health related issues. The hospitalisation occurred in July. The next month, after being released and sent to a family home on Everitt Road, Quek was found dead.

A Suicide Ruling

Mr. Quek’s death was ruled a suicide. The coroner found that he had taken a number of different medications, a combination which resulted in his death. Unfortunately, the suicide ruling meant that Quek’s family was not allowed to collect his life insurance policy.

An Appeal from the Family

In spite of the coroner’s report, Mr. Quek’s family continues to insist that his death was accidental— the result of visiting too many doctors who gave him different medications that did not work well together. According to reports, Mr. Quek had visited several doctors and had prescriptions for 14 kinds of medicine. He took about 26 pills each day.

Mr. Quek’s family claims that he had big plans to expand the family business. He was also interested in involving his nieces and nephews in the work of the shop, mentoring them in the art of popiah-making. His family have appealed to have the suicide ruling overturned on the basis of these facts. One of his sisters said, “It’s not about the insurance money; it’s about who he was as a person and the honour of our family.”

A Safe Way to Seek Help

If you know someone who is depressed or mentally ill, take time to gently ask questions and encourage that person to visit a top Singapore psychiatrist, rather than going to several different doctors with the same symptoms. At Adelphi Psych Medicine Clinic, your friend or loved one can get the treatment that he or she needs from a single care team. We offer a wide ranges of therapies and services to help our patients recover completely, without additional risk to their mental or physical health.

News Feed from Adelphi Psych Medicine Clinic

Source: Straits Times, Feb 4, 2017