Man who plunged to death had history of mental illness

His social media posts painted a picture of a lonely man who loved his mother dearly.

But on Saturday evening, Mr Ong Ah Tiong's life came to a sudden and tragic end when he plunged to his death after allegedly slashing his father in their flat at Block 126, Geylang East Avenue 1.

Mr Ong, 39, lived in the sixth-storey flat with his 67-year-old father and 84-year-old mother.

The New Paper understands that Mr Ong, who was unemployed, had a history of mental illness and had been admitted to the Institute of Mental Health several times.

Last Saturday, Mr Ong had been asked by his father, Mr Hua Bong Sing, to buy food from the shops below.

But Mr Ong flew into a rage and attacked his dad with a knife before jumping out of the kitchen window, Mr Hua told Shin Min Daily News.

The police received a call for help at about 6.20pm.

They arrived to find Mr Ong lying motionless at the bottom of the block. Paramedics pronounced him dead.

According to Mr Ong's Facebook page, he worked as an insurance agent for about four years before he left the company in 2004.

In December 2013, he worked at a Cheers convenience store at Geylang East Avenue 1, which he said was "very near my house, convenient".

On April 7, 2013, he wrote a post about his mother's 81st birthday, which he said was her "happiest moment" and that she was blessed to have a family with four generations.


Mr Ong appeared lonely: On his Twitter profile, which is public, he asked people to add him on Skype or WeChat.

He shared a number of links to Christian sermon videos and also put up pictures of himself attending church.

In a series of tweets in February last year, he talked to a woman living in Indonesia and invited her to Singapore.

"Where is Wenang? U feel like coming to Singapore? I can take care of u, ok? (sic)," he wrote, attaching a picture of a bear with angel wings holding a gift box.

Earlier tweets even had him sharing his mobile number with a number of women asking to be friends.

According to Mr Hua, his son fell into depression after his relationship with a Thai woman ended over a decade ago, reported Shin Min Daily News.

'I wish I were the one dead'

He slashed me five times with a kitchen knife, then shouted "I'm going to jump down now" in Hokkien thrice before leaping out of the kitchen window, said Mr Hua Bong Sing, 67.

Mr Hua told Shin Min Daily News what happened on Saturday before his son, Mr Ong Ah Tiong, plunged to his death.

He said he had asked Mr Ong to buy dinner and gave him $12. But for unknown reasons, the younger man flew into a rage and attacked him with a kitchen knife.

Speaking from Tan Tock Seng Hospital, Mr Hua, whose head and left ear were bandaged, said he moved in with Mr Ong's mother after her husband died. Mr Ong was their only child.

Mr Hua, who suffers from diabetes and other ailments, said he is confined to his bed most of the time and was unable to control his son.

"If you're unhappy with him, he'd fly into a rage. But I didn't think it'd end so badly this time," he told Shin Min Daily News.

Mr Hua added that he and Mr Ong's mother tried to stop their son from jumping but to no avail.

"Everyone's going to blame me for my son's death. Even my wife said I shouldn't have asked him to go buy food.

Samaritans of Singapore (SOS):1800-2214444
Singapore Association for Mental Health:1800-2837019
Sage Counselling Centre:1800-5555555
Care Corner Mandarin Counselling:1800-3535800

This article was first published on June 20, 2015.
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