A look back at July 2015: The wonder boy and the MRT hero
As 2015 comes to a close, The New Paper looks back at the top stories from our pages this year, and offers a glimpse behind the scenes
He is just 12 years old.
Despite his tender age, the boy, known only as "Abang" ("elder brother" in Malay), has been taking care of his four siblings - aged between two and 11 years old - since last year.
With a sick mother and an absent father, he cooks, dresses his siblings up, takes them to school and stays up until 3am every day to finish his errands.
His mother, who wanted to be known only as Madam Nora, 35, visits hospitals and clinics almost three times a week as she has diabetes and a chronic shoulder injury.
Even though life is difficult, Abang had only one wish - to meet his football heroes from LionsXII.
The New Paper worked with the Football Association of Singapore to make this a reality.
On July 22, the boy was taken to Jalan Besar Stadium to meet the team.
Winger Gabriel Quak put on a new pair of football boots on Abang's feet before the boy and his siblings enjoyed a kick-about with the players.
This heartwarming report won the Feature of the Month Award for July.
Reporter Catherine Robert, 25, said she found out about the family's plight after receiving a phone call from Madam Nora.
She had originally called in to inform Miss Robert about a charitable organisation that had helped her paint her two-room rental flat in Woodlands.
Miss Robert added: "I kept in touch with her and when I got to know her properly, I realised her situation was definitely a story worth telling."
She last spoke to Madam Nora earlier this month and found out that not much has changed in Abang's household.
He is still helping his mother to look after his siblings.
Miss Robert added: "She said that he is her pillar of strength and she wouldn't have been able to make it through life without him."
Man stands up to MRT bully
He bravely stopped a bully from verbally abusing a teenager in an MRT train on July 7.
The confrontation, which was captured on video, showed a middle-aged Caucasian man insulting and threatening the youngster for wearing a T-shirt with an offensive word on it.
Part-time parking attendant Muhammad Hanafie Ali Mahmood, 26, was later seen stepping in to defuse the situation.
The video went viral and captured the attention of Law Minister K. Shanmugam, who praised Mr Hanafie for his actions.
On July 15, the pair met at Chong Pang Community Club over iftar - the meal Muslims eat at dusk during Ramadhan.
Mr Shanmugam said: "The bullying was unacceptable, and what (Mr Hanafie) did made me feel proud, standing up to a bully. (It was) also good to see that he is a Singaporean."
Mr Hanafie later took part in this year's Manhunt Singapore.
He won the Courageous Award during the finals on Dec 5.
Burnt after sari catches fire
She went to the Sri Veeramakaliamman Temple in Serangoon Road to pray on Jan 20.
Freelance make-up artist Joena Shivani Thomas Nathan, 37, suddenly noticed that the air around her was thick with smoke.
When she looked down, she saw that the hem of her sari had caught fire. She tried to brush the small flame off with her hands.
But within seconds, the fire had spread to the rest of her sari. Miss Joena said: "I became like a fireball."
By the time the flames were put out with a fire extinguisher, she had third-degree burns that covered 60 per cent of her body.
She was rushed to the Singapore General Hospital and was discharged on March 22.
Even though a large part of her body, including her arms and the areas below her breasts, are now scarred, she is feeling much better.
In September, Miss Joena, who was born male but had gender reassignment surgery in 2012, acted in a Tamil play titled "Akka (elder sister in Tamil) 3".
It is the third installation of the Akka series of plays that focuses on the lives of Indian transgender women in Singapore.
Elderly woman's abuse caught on video
Her plight came to light only after a video of her being abused went viral in July.
The clip recorded by Mr Mohammad Juani, 25, showed his neighbour, Madam Kamisah Burel, 58, being slapped outside her flat, allegedly by her daughter, Ms Siti Nur Redha Khamis.
Another neighbour, Darwinder Singh Sukhdev Singh, 40, was charged on July 24 with abetting Ms Siti, 25, to voluntarily cause hurt.
Singh, who is unemployed, had allegedly abetted her to feed her mother human faeces and urine on July 1.
A week later, he faced two additional charges - a second count of abetting another person to voluntarily cause hurt to the elderly woman and one of voluntarily causing hurt.
Singh is accused of abetting Ms Siti's father, Mr Khamis Abas, to do the same thing to Madam Kamisah in April this year. He is also accused of slapping Mr Khamis last year.
A pre-trial conference in Singh's case will be held on Jan 18.
Woman jailed for killing flatmate
Ang Soo Hoon (left) was jailed for killing her flatmate Celine Ng (right). PHOTOS: ST, WANBAO FILE
The two women lived together and had an intimate relationship in 2010.
But one ended up killing the other on May 26, 2011 after they celebrated the victim's 36th birthday with friends.
Property agent Celine Ng Swee Peng's remains were discovered only 40 days later in Clementi Woods, where Ang Soo Hoon had dumped her body.
On July 16, Ang, now 40, was jailed for 12½ years after pleading guilty to one count each of culpable homicide not amounting to murder, dishonest misappropriation of property and giving false information to a public servant.
The court heard that Ms Ng had wanted to kill herself in the West Bay condominium on West Coast Crescent where they lived.
Ang said Ms Ng asked her to "help her die" by smothering her with a pillow. Ms Ng called her "useless" when the attempt was unsuccessful.
Ang said she was so enraged by the insult from her friend of 16 years that she then strangled her.