Singapore

Making a difference: Biker stops to send elderly man home

We profile six everyday heroes who have made a difference in the lives of strangers. Their heartwarming deeds are celebrated in the ongoing Good Man Good Deeds Good Rice campaign, a collaboration between Chinese evening daily Lianhe Wanbao and Tong Seng Produce, which will donate 500kg of its SongHe rice and 60 litres of canola oil each to charities of their choice.

When Mr Mohamad Jalil Mohamad saw an elderly man wandering along the road shoulder of the Pan-Island Expressway (PIE), he did not just speed away on his motorcycle like the bikers before him.

Instead, the 24-year-old stopped to approach him.

The 80-year-old was walking aimlessly in a top, shorts and slippers with a plastic bag in hand. Cars were flying past him and Mr Jalil was worried for the man's safety.

Mr Jalil said: "I thought it was dangerous, so I decided to stop and see if he needed help."

The old man told Mr Jalil that he did not know where he was or where he came from.

Mr Jalil realised that the old man likely suffered from dementia, which was how he got lost on the PIE.

Mr Jalil, who served as a police officer during his national service days, asked the man for his identity card but the man gave a blank look.

He rummaged through the plastic bag that the man had and finally found his IC with his address on it. The elderly man was more than 3km away from his home in Bukit Batok.

Mr Jalil wanted to send the man home on his bike but halfway through the journey, the man insisted on walking home. He then flagged a taxi for him.

Mr Jalil later uploaded the encounter on Facebook and his post was shared on Stomp. He was then contacted by the Alzheimer's Disease Association, who said that Mr Jalil had saved the man.

In response, Mr Jalil said: "He was walking along the PIE, an accident could have happened at any time."

Mr Jalil had once offered tissues to a girl who vomited on his shoe in a bus.

He said: "Many passengers were looking at her weirdly, some even changed seats. It was sad."

However, he believes that Singaporeans are ultimately kind.

"A lot of people care too much about what other people think.

"But kindness is from our hearts. If we want to help people, we should do it without fearing what other people think."

Mr Jalil's choice of charity is the Sree Narayana Mission Home, founded in 1948. It provides services for dementia patients with a Dementia Go To Point located in its nursing home to help those with the disease who have gotten lost.

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