Singapore

Mum told him not to drive

GRIEVING: Ms Ong Li Li (above) said she often advised her son Fabian against excessive drinking. She divorced her sons' father, Mr Toh Ho Ann, 10 years ago. - TNP PHOTOS: PHYLLICIA WANG

His mother said Mr Fabian Ong had a girlfriend and just before his death, they had argued over his drinking. Mr Ong promised her that he would stop.

In the early hours of July 18 last year, Mr Ong drove his mother home to Bukit Batok from their workplace in Bendemeer and drove out again.

Around dawn, Ms Ong Li Li called her son when she realised he wasn't home.

The 50-year-old said: "When he picked up, he told me he was coming home. I knew he wasn't sober because he was slurring a bit, so I told him not to drive."

Mr Ong crashed his car at about 6.10am and was pronounced dead at 7am.

Five months on, the single mother of two boys is still grieving over the death of her older child whom she described as a responsible son who helped out in the family business.

FAMILY

Speaking with The New Paper on Thursday, she said she divorced her sons' father, Mr Toh Ho Ann, more than 10 years ago and got custody of the boys. Mr Toh, a commercial diver, was also at the inquiry.

"After the divorce, there were difficult times," she said in Mandarin, adding that Mr Ong used to get fevers almost every month.

"It was only about a month before he died that I found some Chinese medicine which helped improve his condition."

After he completed national service, Mr Ong went on to help out with the family business.

Ms Ong runs a KTV bar in Bendemeer and her son was the bar manager.

"Because we are in the business of running a pub, we know how people can be like when they get drunk," she said.

"So I've always told him it is okay to drink but not so much that he'd cause a nuisance.

"He was business-minded because he knew he had a stake in it and if the business does well, it is good for our family.

"I was just thinking of buying him a newer model (of her car) but this happened.

"I doted on him. He was obedient."

GRIEVING: Ms Ong Li Li said she often advised her son Fabian against excessive drinking. She divorced her sons' father, Mr Toh Ho Ann (above), 10 years ago. - TNP PHOTOS: PHYLLICIA WANG