KRISHNASAMY Veloo, 74, is a former Olympian who represented Malaysia at the 1972 Munich Olympics in football.
He is now an inmate of the Integrated Health Management (IHM) nursing home (formerly the Old Xaverian Association building) on Perak Road.Krishnasamy is suffering from diabetes. The toes on his left foot have been amputated. He is really a forgotten man now and relies on his pension of RM1,060 to survive.
I am also a resident of this nursing home. After suffering a stroke on Dec 14, 2017, I joined this nursing home on Nov 1 last year.
Krishnasamy and I have struck up a strong friendship and we more or less share the same interests in sports, especially football. We are both fans of the Malaysian Soccer League and English Premier League.
Krishnasamy was a midfielder who also played for Penang. He was born on Jan 13, 1948.
I subscribe to The Star and we both read with envy the news about current footballers who are mostly professionals and very highly paid. In the olden days, the players were paid a paltry sum to attend training.
Can the relevant authorities like FAM or the Football Association of Penang do something to alleviate Krishnasamy’s financial situation?
Malaysia qualified for two Olympic Games football. One was the Munich Games in 1972 and the other was the Moscow Games in 1980.
Malaysia beat favourites South Korea to gain the Olympic spot in 1980 but then pulled out over the Soviet Union’s invasion of Afghanistan.
Krishnasamy recalls with pride the great honour of donning the Malaysian jersey at our country’s historic Munich Olympics debut and will cherish that proud moment forever.
He is married with two children but they have families of their own to look after. His wife is too old to care for him, which is why he moved into the nursing home.
KOK FOOK LEONG