Family to keep model's death a secret from grandma

PETALING JAYA - The family of part-time model Cheok Hui Min intends to keep news of her death a secret from her ailing grandmother as they are afraid she is not able to stomach the blow of losing her beloved granddaughter.

China Press reported that her relatives plan to tell Cheok's 72-year-old grandmother that she had found employment overseas and got married there.

"We are afraid her grandmother cannot take the news as she loves her very much," said a male relative.

The relative also said that Cheok had gone out to look for a friend to retrieve her tablet the day she went missing on Nov 21 from her home in Ampang, where she lived with her mother.

Cheok, 22, was found dead in a drain in Taman Seruling Jaya, Seremban by a passerby at 7.30am the next day, clad in a pair of shorts and T-shirt.

She was the youngest of three children.

According to police sources, she was found with strangulation marks on her neck.

Cheok's father told reporters that his daughter died a very tragic death.

"She was a very filial daughter. She was a part-time model and she would find time to help her mother sell flowers," said her father, who declined to be named.

He also said that Cheok would call him occasionally even though he and her mother had divorced over 10 years ago.

A memorial service was held for Cheok at the Xiao En Centre in Cheras before she was cremated yesterday at the Cheras crematorium.

One of Cheok's friends, who only wanted to be known as Tam, described Cheok as a chirpy, happy-go-lucky person who loved modelling.

"I think we are all still in shock that she is gone. She was a happy person and a good friend," said Tam, who added that Cheok had recently opened her own florist outlet in the city.

Seremban police chief Assistant Commissioner Zainal Abu confirmed the case, and said police were waiting for the post-mortem report.