14 year old girl died of malnutrition, laid-off father regrets

| October 7th, 2010

(Tianya) Summary: September 26, a 14 year old girl named Xiao Ling (a pseudonym) passed away; the cause of death was shocking: long term malnutrition causing anemia and multiple organ failure. What made Xiao Ling to have such a terrible fate? In 2006 her father got laid off from work and started collecting trash for living. Then her mother passed away in 2007 due to illness, the entire family only had less than 300 yuan income each month. Every meal was just bun and noodles. Xiao Ling was just entering 3rd grade in junior high this year, when she felt sick she never had the money to go see a doctor, she just rested at home. Until one day her legs really gave out, but when she went to the doctor it was too late, her young life had coming to an end.

20101007-malnutrition-02

Looking at her daughter’s portrait and her cinerary casket, Zhao Liying could not stay seated anymore; he took out her daughter’s things, hugged her portrait and started to cry. In eastern outskirts of Xi’an, 40-year-old Zhao Liying held a bunch of colorful clothes, walked slowly to the trash downstairs and threw all the clothes into the trash. His 14-year-old daughter Xiao Ling (a pseudonym) had just passed away.

When walked into Zhao’s home, the dark room smelled like mold. Zhao’s wife passed away in 2007 due to illness, left him with his daughter, “She just entered 3rd grade in Junior high, she also went to school on August 30, but never went to class again.” Zhao said, since the new school year his daughter always felt ill. “We didn’t have money so I did not send her to the hospital, only told her to stay home to rest.” Zhao said that he noticed that his daughter started to eat very little food, and always threw up after eating. “On the 24th, in the morning, my child said her leg was giving out, so I rushed to send her to the hospital.”

Zhao said, “She is my child, but I don’t have money, what was I suppose to do?” His daughter’s cinerary casket was sitting next to the bed, he took out his daughter’s portrait, in the picture, a girl was wearing a school uniform. Zhao just stared quietly. “My child and her mother’s residency are all with her grandmother, I will bury both of their ashes together there.”

“Back then, her mother never worked, but over 1000 yuan can just get by.  Ever since I got laid off in 2006, her mother also was ill, the family was in chaos.” Zhao said after his wife passed away, his daughter became quite and rarely communicated with him.

Zhao said, he collects trash for living every day, “monthly income is only 270 or 280 yuan, simply cannot feed the child.”

The death notice from the Xijing Hospital said, Xiao Ling came to the hospital on 24th at 11 22am, and passed away at 11:05 am on the 26th. The diagnosis read, septic shock, cachexia, cause of death was septic shock. Emergency doctor said, Xiao Ling die of long-term malnutrition, which caused anemia and multiple organ failures.

20101007-malnutrition-01

The cartoon Xiao Ling drew when she was alive

83 Comments | Leave a comment | Comment feed

  1. Chinese says:

    How can you be a super power when your people die from hunger?
    Tell me!

    • asdasasd says:

      like this

    • turtle says:

      What can I say….

    • Lin says:

      What korean_guy said, China isn’t a super power.
      Only the U.S. currently is.

      • 白makzimillian翔 says:

        EU is a superpower too, but that is not the point. The point is that there are policies in place that protect the people and give the poor and unemployed support (necessities like food & clean water included). China doesn’t.

        Welfare and Social Services in Mainland China = HAHAHAHA哈哈哈哈哈HAHAHAHA

    • snolax says:

      this kind of shit happens everyday in china, only a few gets reported. though its kinda sad, but im not even surprised anymore.

  2. ektor says:

    It seems the father had enough food to survive, though

    • Gary says:

      The father looks quite gaunt in the picture. He is certainly malnourished himself. A grown adult’s body can get along on less for longer than a developing child. The child needs protein and minerals that are not provided by plain buns and noodles but the adult could survive on basic starches a lot longer because his body stored up minerals from back before he lost his job and they went on the restricted diet.

      • georgeson says:

        You are right. Children are more susceptible to malnutrition. However, I think he is still a bad father, probably also a bad husband. His wife never worked. So I bet the man seldom did housework when his wife was alive. His wife’s sudden leave made the family into big trouble, supporting my guess.

        Men need to know how to do housework, how to take care of children. China needs to learn from Sweden. In Sweden, all boys and girls have to learn housework for credits. China also needs laws that force male citizens to be in charge of at least 50% housework. This is not only for women’s right but also for improving their ability to resist crisis like in this post.

        • Gary says:

          Bad husband and father, are you kidding? The man was out picking through trash to try to feed his child, what do you want? If you’re a regular here do you recall the recent story about the little boy who had to take care of the ancient grandpa because the father had gone away to work in the city and never returned? That one was a lousy father. The dad in this story deserves our sympathies.

          • georgeson says:

            Do not abuse your sympathy

            • B-real says:

              Wow, what does doing house work have to do with malnutrition?

              Then I have to say that garbage is full a shit to eat. I’ve seen how chinese eat. Allot of food goes un-eaten. So the question is, the food in this guy’s area is not worth eating. “Convenient noodles” in a cup has enough nutrients, to sustain life.

              • Joe says:

                Based on that comment, I am certain that you would be unable to keep a child alive, or even a plant.

        • john says:

          you are a fucking asshole and sweden is a country of cunts, fuck you man, you obviously a cold hearted son of a whore.

        • Lorn says:

          I’m not saying the father did too little or not it’s impossible to tell right now how much of what he earned went to his child (though perhaps it is indicative of his character that his child had clean school uniforms, colourful clothing and was in fact attending school). The main point I wanted to make is that in fact China does have a class for housework.

          It’s called labour class or 劳动课 (laodongke). Children learn how to clean, dust and even peel fruit and such as part of their primary school curriculum (China is still keeping up communism in schools after all, and part of that is appreciation of the labouring classes).

          Any law that forces a single gender to take on exactly 50% of the housework at all times is going to be A) impossible to enforce, B) ludicrous to enforce.

          The father is collecting trash for a living, which means he’s probably out dawn till dusk (probably till way later in fact, to cash in on the waste left by partying youths) collecting trash in order to make what meagre amount he’s making. In a country where even people with Masters degrees can end up as dish hands, he’s not actually doing all that badly.

          In a 24 hour day he probably needs to work around 12-15 to keep the family going. It is also physically demanding work that would take him across the city on what I would guess is a boardwagon or tricycle-wagon. Say he sleeps 6 hours a day, that leaves 3 hours in which to eat, bathe, do his private business, unwind, take care of his daughter (perhaps help her with homework) or whatever else one might spend a bit of time doing.

          The daughter probably had to do some housework… That isn’t what killed her. The fact is what China needs is a better welfare system, a better healthcare system and a better census system. All three combined would provide the safety net required to prevent these tragedies from happening. The father could not go to hospital because he couldn’t afford it, and being a chronically ill woman, the wife probably in fact did very little of the housework (meaning the man probably had to do it anyway, especially when the daughter was very young), there’s no need to turn the tragedy into a feminist comment on society or saying the man is at fault.

  3. Aodaliya Ren says:

    Words are very inadequate to express what I am feeling.
    I pray to God to give this father courage to overcome this grief.
    May God bless him, and endow him with love and care.

    May the girl be happily with her mother now reunited.

    • GuoBao says:

      Lovely. You managed to mention some lame superstition in 3 of your 4 lines. Wake up,, there are no gods and praying doesn’t help anything. Come to think of it,, I think very probably the father would rather have you give him some food than talking to non-existent beings on his behalf. Seriously,, if you are a missionary in China I hope you get kicked out ASAP.

      • AlleyCat says:

        Before throwing away old shoes, one should have a better pair:
        I considered atheism, but there weren’t enough holidays.

        • GuoBao says:

          I for one would argue that there aren’t any old shoes to throw away in the first place. “Author unknown” for the quote. It’s a good one though.

          • AlleyCat says:

            Yeah, for all we know the quote might have been written by a saint. Don’t forget to wash your feet (-;

          • Aodaliya Ren says:

            I wasn’t alluding to several gods or considering talking to non-existant beings as you put it. I would try to explain from an esoteric perspective but I see you dont have the capacity to grasp such concepts.

      • Tony Neville says:

        Zhao Liying and his family would have faired better in life with the help of missionaries than what they got from their neighbours. The man looks like he’s been living in Mao Zedong’s China.

        • Aodaliya Ren says:

          Correct, I have lived and will live in China again. Back to the path of enlightenment.

    • georgeson says:

      Gods will not bless him.
      Gods will only help people who help themselves.
      This man never knows how to save his family.
      He met troubles but he is still alive. As long as his is alive, he should go out for work. Any work…or even selling blood.
      He shouldn’t ignore the poor situation of his daughter.
      He is just trash.

  4. Tony Neville says:

    I don’t get it. No friends, relatives, neighbours, no charity, no “good Samaritan” could pitch in to help them?

    • not important says:

      Don’t forget that the single child policy also means that you won’t have any cousins or uncles/aunts.
      I don’t know if charity is big in China but they should have had neighbors.
      Not sure, maybe they didn’t care or face forbade his father to accept their help.

      • Tony Neville says:

        But even so, there can’t be much face left to save after having spent the past four years collecting garbage. Could the economy in the eastern outskirts of Xi’an possibly suck that badly that Zhao could not get a job in four years? Here’s something else to ponder. Teachers at “Xiao Ling’s” school would have noticed a child suffering from malnutrition. I wonder what was going on there. Maybe there is a preponderance of people in Zhao’s neighbourhood who are ambivalent to the dire suffering of others. Yet, that is also hard to believe, unless Zhao’s situation is as common as mud. Lots of questions…

    • o.m.g. says:

      chinese = lack of empathy

  5. Bob says:

    Staying home and rest?

  6. Eason says:

    Heartbreaking. There is no excuse for this to happen, my God.

  7. Neil says:

    This is not a failure of a country, or a family. This is a failure of a community. Love thy neighbor.

  8. Deladieri says:

    she draw Sakura Kinamoto

    A famous Magical Girl.

  9. john digmeme says:

    So where is the Socialism we keep hearing so much about?

  10. Mark says:

    Free Liu Xiaobo

    Liu Xiaobo is an impassioned literary critic, political essayist and democracy advocate who has been repeatedly jailed by the Chinese government for his writings. On Oct. 8, 2010, he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in recognition of “his long and nonviolent struggle for fundamental human rights in China.”

    Mr. Liu is perhaps China’s best known dissident. He was given an 11-year prison sentence on subversion charges on Dec. 25, 2009, after urging Chinese leaders to embrace democratic reforms, a sentence that was widely regarded as unusually harsh.

    Mr. Liu is the first Chinese citizen to win the Peace Prize and one of three laureates to have received it while in prison.

    In awarding the prize to Mr. Liu, the Norwegian Nobel Committee delivered an unmistakable rebuke to Beijing’s authoritarian leaders at a time of growing intolerance for domestic dissent and spreading unease internationally over the muscular diplomacy that has accompanied China’s economic rise.

    In a move that in retrospect may have been counterproductive, a senior Chinese official recently warned the Norwegian committee’s chairman that giving the prize to Mr. Liu would adversely affect relations between the two countries.

    The Chinese Foreign Ministry reacted angrily to the news, calling it a “blasphemy” to the Peace Prize and saying it would harm Norwegian-Chinese relations. “Liu Xiaobo is a criminal who has been sentenced by Chinese judicial departments for violating Chinese law,” it said in a statement.

    The prize is an enormous boost for China’s beleaguered reform movement and an affirmation of the two decades Mr. Liu has spent advocating peaceful political change in the face of unremitting hostility from the ruling Chinese Communist Party.

    Blacklisted from academia and barred from publishing in China, Mr. Liu has been harassed and detained repeatedly since 1989, when he stepped into the drama playing out on Tiananmen Square by staging a hunger strike and then negotiating the peaceful retreat of student demonstrators as thousands of soldiers stood by with rifles at the ready.

    • AlleyCat says:

      As a european, I have been personally moved as well as encouraged by the efforts of the international community and hundreds of Chinese intellectuals and concerned citizens, including Mr. Liu Xiaobo in signing the Charter 08, which calls for democracy and freedom in China.

      I also believe that Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao’s recent comments on freedom of speech being indispensable for any country and people’s wish for democracy and freedom being irresistible are a reflection of the growing yearning for a more open China. Such reforms can only lead to a harmonious, stable and prosperous China, which can contribute greatly to a more peaceful world.

      Peace is not the absence of conflict, but the ability to cope with it. Right now, Chinese authorities should take a deep breath, refrain from ridiculous censorship and keep their pride from getting easily offended by critizism. We are aware of our own deficiencies, and we do not mean to insult or offend anybody.

      We are open for debate, that is ruled by reason and mutual respect.
      Anything less simply will not do.

    • ektor says:

      Ha
      He’s been repeatedly put in jail for RESPECTING CHINESE LAWS. Just have a look at PRC’s constitution (I think it’s article 35, but I’m not sure)

      Liu is a great man, much greater than Lei Feng.

    • adf says:

      Makes perfect sense. This guy is funded by the NED.

      The good ol’US. Still trying to topple foreign governments.

      Xiaobo, and guess who – the NED:

      Liu Xiaobo, President of Chinese dissident group ICPC:

      http://www.zoominfo.com/people/Xiaobo_Liu_378792980.aspx

      ICPC received $135,000 from the NED in 2007:

      http://www.ned.org/grants/07programs/grants-asia07.html

      $135,000 from the NED in 2006:

      http://www.ned.org/grants/06programs/grants-asia06.html

      $85,000 from the NED in 2004:

      http://www.ned.org/grants/04programs/grants-asia04.html

  11. GuoBao says:

    Let us all take a moment to congratulate China for winning a Nobel prize. Okay technically China has won before but the two guys who did seized the opportunity and got the hell out of Dodge a couple of years later. I remember a thread where the netimorons screamed and shouted over not having any Chinese Nobel laureates. Now they have one, and it seems that he’s not gonna change his nationality for at least 11 years. Good on you China.

    • B-real says:

      haha I wonder if his wife will get any money seeing as though the dough maker is incarcerated? Maybe this was a pitty reward by the commitee. She is going to need that money in order to give him his 3 meals a day ration, so he won’t die of malnutrition.

  12. adf says:

    China will have democracy on its terms and in its time. The Norwegian Nobel Committee is a joke. After Obama and Krugman won the prize, I have no respect for it whatsover. This nobel just confirms my view. What exactly does awarding this nobel accomplish for the common chinese person other than make the government withdraw and delay any action on democracy?

    • GuoBao says:

      Really? So Random-Guy-off-the-internet-ADF wouldn’t be impressed if he was sat down next to a Nobel laureate at a dinner party? Regarding your question: There are tens of thousands of political prisoners in China and many many more who are blacklisted, can’t get job and can’t get published. Hell,, many of them are not even allowed to own a computer. This award puts the eye on China again and reminds everyone that things aren’t all just peachy just because you are running two digit annual GDP growth figures.

      The world has been bending over backwards for China the last 10 years in the holy name of trade and money. Only recently we’ve figured out that China doesn’t give a rat’s ass about anything and anyone outside of it’s borders -most notably lately in the fact that the currency is kept artificially low to secure jobs and relative prosperity in the Chinese economy while millions of jobs are lost abroad because of it. It’s about time that someone woke up and decided to make a stand pointing out that there is still something rotten in the state of China.

      • Voice of China says:

        Signs of an idiot:

        – proposes that being a ‘Nobel laureate’ commands actual respect – uh, not if the prize means jack shit

        – literally interprets the word ‘political prisoners’ and assumes that somehow in China the government can prevent you from going on Tao Bao and buying a computer

        – assumes that nations are actually motivated by more than money

        – believes that the world only ‘RECENTLY’ figured out China cares only about improving domestic conditions

        – assumes that the role of a country is to be subservient to global interests

        – believes that artificially manipulating currency actually benefits rather than hurt the involved economy in the long term – defying any economic reasoning

        – somehow writes a comment about economics and politics in a story about a 14 year old child dying of malnutrition

        *Need I say more?

        • ektor says:

          I need to say:

          BRAVO!!!!

        • GuoBao says:

          I think you’ve said more than enough in your other posts. Have a cookie and a couple of mao.

          • Voice of China says:

            I see you’re not even going to bother defending the load of bs you dumped in your last comment. Nice choice.

            Yeah, I think I put you trolls in your place with my last few posts. So much so that some of the haters like Ektor and Bob have become mentally ill. I’d hate to see you in that state 🙂

        • Tony Neville says:

          Irrespective of whether the prize means “jack shit” to people, it draws their attention to the Nobel Laureate. More people will learn about Liu Xiaobo and his cause. By extension the spotlight will again be placed on China’s authoritarian government. I for one will relish it. How about you?

          • Voice of China says:

            The Nobel Prize has always just been a political tool awarded by a loaded committee.

            This was just became blatantly clear even the sheepish public, after Obama won the Nobel Prize for doing nothing.

            I think that it is the personal characteristics of the Nobel Laureate that stands out more than the having been conferred the prize.

            Now, considering your comment wasn’t really a flame, I’ll keep my answer civil.

            1.) Considering most people are stupid, there won’t be a lot of attention placed on China.
            2.) The real issue is how the media will try and play it out
            3.) I personally don’t care

            • AlleyCat says:

              “This was just became blatantly clear even the sheepish public”.

              1.) Your english is getting better all the time.

              2.) You forgot to add a childish emoticon,
              to show you don’t care

              3.) Bravo

              • Voice of China says:

                1.) Oh nitpicking on typos now are we?
                2.) No, I genuinely find it funny when people become mentally unstable after getting their ego served on a platter and resulting to words like ‘Bravo’. 😀

            • Voice of China says:

              Oh to clarify, add ‘to’ between ‘the’ and ‘sheepish’ and it might be a bit more comprehensible to your peanut brain.

              • HH says:

                LMAO. I enjoy your rhetoric and satirical comments ! big fan.

                • Voice of China says:

                  Hahaha.. Don’t worry, you should keep visiting this site if you want to see more humor. There are enough dumbasses here to mock for eternity, so long as I don’t kick my habit of procrastination.

                  • HH says:

                    hah. I have hardly seen anyone more eloquent and intelligent than you =). though I am not smart enough to understand all your comments. =). keep it up , =)

                    • HH says:

                      Your speech and comments actually made me feel one time in 17 years of life that I am sooooo nooooot smart. =(.

            • ektor says:

              My mother said you were a bit boring last night. Strangely, she didn’t say, BRAVO!!!

              • Voice of China says:

                Hahaha… well your mother is very experienced and I suspect your father is not who you think he is 🙂

  13. Potomacker says:

    “What exactly does awarding this nobel accomplish for the common chinese person other than make the government withdraw and delay any action on democracy?”

    It’s like I tell my wife. If she would only stop crying, I would stop hitting her. I don’t know why she is so unwilling to understand my feelings.

  14. victoria says:

    it really sad to see…. people suffering this way! but in all we must give thx to the almighty God for he know what’s best for every one

  15. kimboslice says:

    I feel sorry for his daughter and for him. This is a human tragedy that should not happen today.

  16. xino says:

    I could just cry…I feel sorry for her and the father

    but I don’t farking understand!
    How can she had malnutrition? In Afrika, people down there don’t even have proper food to eat. They don’t eat for weeks.

    All she ate was bun and noodles. I mean in fact most of the food you find in China are always noodles nothing else!
    In fact I hate noodles myself why? because I used to bang out noodles all the time, until one day I ate noodles for breakfast O_o early morning 7am. I was in the train and just instantly lost my energy, I felt so weak for a moment. And I hate it when this happens, this is caused by not eating anything and consuming amount of energy that your body can’t go on. Ever since that happened, I hated noodles and found it that it doesn’t give me energy, not protein and not meat!

    This is the reason why most majority of Chinese are always skinny because noodles is NOTHING! Doesn’t give you energy or meat.

    The thing is the noodles and buns must have consist of good ingredients.

    F*king China. I just hate the government so much! Their people are being overworked and suffering and you have the Government acting tough warning presidents and nations not to side with Dila Lama or people they imprisoned.

  17. me says:

    China is a primitive country. Culturally inferior to any nation on this planet, like African cultures for instance which are culturally more advanced than China. But so is every sheep herd and dog clan….Wisdom, knowledge – nothing in China. China has no culture, china has indeed NOTHING. China is the greatest wannabe and tragedy on this planet. China is stucked in the Metal Age, not able to advance since thousands of years. Like animals. Just sucking from others and posing like they created something. that is china. China is the most backward entity on this planet and still: They are filled and filled again with stinky hot arrogance. China must be divided, erased, eradicated, destroyed and flushed down the toilet for the good and peace of this world. That is their fate and what they deserve. Their small brains will make it easier for us. It will happen anyways and they-themselves will do the job for us…what a joke this china is. Sad.

    • victoria says:

      wait a mintute….you don’t know any thing about China….! so get the fuck off!

      I have been in China for almost two 2 years now and to say the people are nice, the economy is good all all the people! anyway where do u come from buddy, you need to check out because that primative country you are talking about is help your shit out…! i mean your country!

      You are talking about Africa culture, do you know anything about culture at all! yes i know that african cultures is advance so is Chinese culture! And frankly speaking am also from Africa>…… Hehe…!

    • Tony Neville says:

      Whose brain fart are you?

    • Aodaliya Ren says:

      Your brain had began to decompose during that attempt. I suggest once the faecal matter starts to protrude from your ears you seek help!

      中国很棒。

      • brainfart says:

        May God bless your brainfart and share the stink with others that desperately need to smell it

    • and me too says:

      I am just shocked how could you discribe my thoughts so properly! I honestly agree with all of your sentence, and I just can’t agree with them more!
      china is really something what is just NOT supposed to exist. It isn’t a developing country, it is an undeveloping butthole – everything what is shit on this planet comes out here.
      The primitive, discriminative racism; the desperate and ridicoulos efforts to prove that they are superior; the strong deny of anything what is good, healthy or nice; the arrogant and ignorant behaving of them are simply unacceptable. chinese are not supposed to exist. NOTHING is good in this country.
      But I support they in destroying themselves.
      Hail to Chairman Mao – he is responsible for the death of 60 million!
      Hail to Imperial Japanese Army – for nanjing!
      Hail to the Earth – for the sichuan earthquake!
      Hail to the kindergarten/school massmurders!
      Hail to Sanlu Company – for the poisonous milk!
      And to the father – for the malnutrition!
      But first of all: The One Child Policy. – 400 million of chinese haven’t been borned!!
      I am thankful to chinese – for solving the chinese-problem. Thank you!

  18. Vicky says:

    Can’t do anything with it, but my sympathy goes to you

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