Woman dies in fire with dogs

Charred body found with pets in razed house

It was a sombre affair at the funeral wake of septuagenarian dog lover Thum Pek Guan on Saturday.

The woman was killed in a fire with her four dogs at a wooden house in Paya Terubong in Georgetown, Penang.

Her godson Ong Lye Seng, 54, was alone and looked despondent as he burnt prayer offerings at the Mount Erskine funeral parlour, Malaysia’s The Star reported yesterday.

Madam Thum, 75, was cremated at the crematorium yesterday.

The four dogs had been given a “proper burial”, reported The Star.

Mr Ong, an undertaker, said he buried the dogs at a site near the razed house.

“The dogs were like my godmother’s children.

“She loved them so much so that she refused to move to her (public housing) flat in Mount Erskine as there would be no place for her beloved pets.


“She even used the RM200 (S$77) given to her monthly by the state Welfare Department to rent a place here so that she could stay with them,” he said on Saturday.

On Friday, firefighters found the elderly woman’s charred remains with her dogs’ near the door at the rented wooden house.

The annexe building, a steel foundry, was also partially destroyed.

Meanwhile, Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng presented RM4,000 to Ms Thum’s goddaughter Phang Seh Moy.

Mr Lim said the RM2,000 came from his office while the Welfare Department and Paya Terubong assemblyman Yeoh Soon Hin also presented RM1,000 each to Ms Phang.

“The state government is always concerned about the plight and welfare of the people.

“Besides RM4,000, we will also present another RM1,000 to Ms Phang under the state’s Senior Citizens Appreciation Programme,” he said.

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