SINGAPORE - My son would have been a better man than me, said Private (Pte) Ganesh Pillay Magindren's father.
Art director Renganathan Magindren (right) had been grooming his son, who had schizophrenia, to become an outstanding artist.
"He had so many plans but I told him (they could be fulfilled) as long as he first went through army and built up his social skills with others," he said.
But in July last year, nine months after he enlisted in the army, Pte Ganesh (inset), 23, was found dead at the foot of his Sengkang condominium.
FAMILY BROKEN UP
Pte Ganesh was the eldest child in the family of five. He had a younger sister and brother.
Taking care of a schizophrenic child for 23 years was not easy, said Mr Magindren.
"I had to make sure he took his medicine every night, and would always have to check in on him, even while I was working. I had to do more than the usual," he said.
"But even then, he was a very well-behaved boy. He listened to me and shared the same interest in sketching as I did."
The former student at Lasalle College of the Arts had planned to do animation and scripting, though his days in the school were far from easy.
He was frequently bullied by his classmates, it was revealed in a coroner's inquiry into his death.
What made taking care of him more difficult for Mr Magindren was that his wife of 22 years was also mentally unwell.
"I took care of chores and made sure I didn't stress both of them out," he said.
"But now, my whole family is broken up in misery, especially my wife, whose sickness has deteriorated. Ganesh was her motivation to be happy."