If you have read articles from mothership.com around June this year, you may remember a story about a man who had everything set for him, but had it all taken away before he could even begin, and yet, he soldiered on. That is the story of Takalah Tan.
A very atheletic individual, Takalah had been very involved in sports, such as scuba diving, boxing, and skydiving, and had even served in the Commandos. He was also on his way to a career in a multinational company, beating out seven thousand other applicants for the role. Unfortunately, he met with a horrific accident in 1994, losing half of his memory capacity, and all of his memories. He needed to relearn even basic skills, such as speech. In his own words, ‘I lost my career, my love, my coveted career, my past life.’
To make matters worse, it was during the period of Takalah’s recovery post-surgery that his father died from a heart attack, after deciding against a heart-bypass. Till today, Takalah is convinced that his father had sacrificed his own health due to the high costs of his son’s surgeries.
This final event pushed him to continually improve and upgrade himself, and despite all that life has thrown at him, Takalah Tan has done no less than miraculously. From needing to relearn how to speak, in six years, he became a qualified teacher, and later on earned a Masters of Public Health. On top of that, after an operation on his right shin, he even ran a full marathon!
When asked what was his motivation to take part in the Relay Majulah, he simply said, ‘We are one in Unity, there is a part for everyone.’ Though he is living with multiple post-traumatic stress deficits, he says that, ‘I will run a good time for the noble cause of Relay Majulah!’
Takalah hopes that through his participation in the Relay Majulah and raising funds for the President’s Challenge, that ‘Post-Acquired Brain-injury Singaporean Survivors can be adequately engaged into society and uniquely enabled!’
Support Takalah by Donating to President's Challenge