PETALING JAYA: Four years ago, four teenagers helped a stranger who suddenly went into labour outside a shopping mall.
The heroic efforts of Farhana Mohd Fadzli, now 21, Wee Tai May, 22, Shirley Lee, 19, and Wong Hui Yu, 23, in helping the woman deliver her baby on the spot made headlines then.
Except for Farhana and Wee who were already friends at the time, the rest did not know one another.
Today, the bond remains between the young women and the family of little Kee Sun Way (pic) despite them being world’s apart from each other.
Their WhatsApp chat group, which is named “True Malaysian Spirit”, is always abuzz with updates from each other, especially those about Sun Way who is turning four on Sept 22.
“The incident has taught me to be there for each other regardless of our race or religion, ” said Farhana.
“Although we have parted ways to pursue our studies, we share a close relationship.
“We support each other in what we do regardless of the time difference, ” said Farhana, who is studying geophysics at the Memorial University of Newfoundland in Canada.
To her, it costs nothing to do good.
“I hope the story of us with Sun Way will inspire more Malaysians to know how our community should be, which is to respect one another even when it is hard to do so, ” she said.
Recalling that fateful day outside Sunway Pyramid where they helped accountant Siow Huey Quin, 39, give birth, Lee said: “I was just a high school student walking in the mall like any other day.
“Then I saw Mrs Kee who was in distress.
“I knew I couldn’t walk away and I had to do something, ” said Lee, who is studying medicine at James Cook University in Australia.
Lee, who used her shoelaces to tie the umbilical cord when the baby was delivered, said their familial bond was perhaps “meant to be”.
The experience, she said, taught her about standing up for one another and “how love for humanity can bring so much change and difference to the world”.
Lee, who last saw the boy in January, said she loves the way Sun Way calls her “jie jie” (sister).
“He will give me a kiss on the cheek each time Mr Kee takes pictures. I think he remembers me well because I was the first person he saw when he was born, ” she said.
Wong, 23, who is in her fourth year medical course at International Medical University in Kuala Lumpur, said she was still amazed by their special bond.
“It’s the thought of watching little Sun Way grow up that ties all of us together.
“This is where I learnt that even though we come from different backgrounds, by sharing the same spirit, we connect and support each other willingly.
“And this is how Malaysia should be. We have a beautiful cultural diversity.
“The Malaysian spirit keeps all of us together closely, ” she said.
As for Wee, 22, who is studying in Waterloo, Canada, it has been three years since she last saw Sun Way’s family.
“They are always at the back of my mind. And seeing Sun Way growing up so well really warms my heart.
“I’m so proud of him, ” says Wee.
Sun Way’s father, Kee Hoo Beng, said he wants his son to know the kindness that had been shown to him.
That was why he always made it a point to keep in touch with the young women.
“It is important to remember where we came from. We are forever indebted to them for their help.
“I make it a point to always tell him the story of his birth. I want him to understand and remember the significance behind his birth, which transcends skin colour and religion.
“I hope he will continue to keep in touch with them even after my wife and I are gone one day, ” said the father of three.
Kee, 44, said it had become a norm for him and his wife to check on the girls via the chat group.
“I will try to meet up with them whenever they have the time or when they are back in Malaysia for holiday, ” he said.
He said that the last time all of them got together was on Sun Way’s first birthday.