A month or so back I wrote about a teacher and dear friend who was diagnosed with stage 4 colon and liver cancer. I described how dear a friend he was to me and how the news shook me to the bones. For those who missed it, you can find it here
His conditions never took for the better. After 10 courses of radiotherapy, the doctors at the GH said they have done all they could and that he could be discharged. He never got discharged because he started to vomit blood.
Almost everyday was filled with us, somehow or other, talking about his condition. He was the Chairman of the Permuafakatan Islam and I the vice chairman. Last week, in his absence, I chaired a meeting of the Permuafakatan Islam and amongst other things, tomorrow the 17th of July, after our prize giving day, all Muslim teachers are to adjourn to the surau just next to the school for Sembahyang Hajat and Yassin.
Today, in between rehearsals for the prize giving day, preparations were made for the Sembahyang Hajat. We had secured permission from the surau committee to use the surau. At about 4.30, a teacher came in and said that he had received a phone call from the Penolong Kanan informing us that that friend, Rosli, is in very bad shape and that the Penolong Kanan had given permission for any teacher who wished to visit him to do so.
A group of teachers went in three cars. A few teachers and I had to remain because someone had to see to the students in the midst of all the preparations. At about 5.50, I felt that I should say something and below are the sms exchanges between me and another teacher.
Maaf saya nak minta tolong sikit. Saya tak sanggup pi tengok Ckg Rosli. Boleh tak sampaikan salam saya? Saya nak kata kat dia saya nak minta ampun dan maaf atas segala kesalahan saya kat dia dan minta dia halalkan apa saja yang termakan dan terminum. Ini pun kalau ckg sanggup la. Kalau ckg sendiri pun tak sanggup tak apa. (time 5.56pm)
Saya faham, Insyaallah. Tapi depa kata dia koma. (5.59pm)
Takapalah, kalau ada rezeki tolong sampaikan kalau tak ada, nak buat macam mana? Terima kasih. (6.00pm)
Ckg Rosli dah tak ada.. (6.17pm)
My heart sank. I called the teacher on the phone to confirm and from her voice I knew she was crying. I couldn't hold my own tears back but there were students around so I had to control myself but still my cheeks were wet.
I broke the news to a few teachers and soon there was a flurry of phone calls. I walked to the rest room to be alone and I could hear a group of form 2 girls who had just heard the news crying. I entered the room and had a good cry because I couldn't control it anymore.
Things have changed permanently. A perfect gentlemen had left this world and knowing him, I know he is heading for a better place.
Good Bye Rosli, I will miss you.
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