KUANTAN, Aug 31 — An elderly couple believed to have perished in a blaze which razed 32 buildings in Sungai Lembing here this morning was preparing for their youngest son’s wedding scheduled to be held next week.
According to the Pahang Fire and Rescue Department, the charred body of Chow Kim Mui, 70, was found by firemen in the wooden shophouse the couple lived in and from where they also ran a restaurant business, while the body of her husband Ho Yok Fun, 74, has yet to be found. Firemen are still undertaking the search with the help of the department’s K9 dog unit.
Ho’s younger brother Ho Yok Kam, 69, who told reporters at the scene about the wedding plans, said he had rushed over from his home in Kuantan, located about an hour’s drive away, as soon as he heard the news.
“When I arrived, I saw the firemen putting out the fire...then people told me my brother and sister-in-law had not been found and may have been trapped inside,” Ho said.
Yok Kam said the couple’s four children comprising two daughters and two sons, all of whom lived elsewhere, were making their way to Sungai Lembing to assist authorities by undergoing deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) tests which would facilitate the identification of the recovered body.
The department’s deputy director Mohd Sani Harul said the body is believed to be that of Chow as a woman’s accessories had been found with the remains.
The 32 buildings destroyed in the 1.30am fire comprised 20 shophouses, 11 terrace homes and a library, all believed to be about 100 years old. — Bernama