BANG Khwang prison in Nonthaburi province announced today (July 20) that it will be proceeding with funeral of Si Quey or Li Quey Sae Urng, the Chinese migrant worker who has been labeled a cannibal for decades and his body displayed at a Siriraj Hospital museum with the ceremony to take place on Thursday (July 23), Sanook.com reported this afternoon.
“Bang Khwang Central Prison would like to inform that it will be proceeding with the funeral of prisoner Si Quey or Li Quey Sae Urng on Thursday July 23, 2020,” the announcement said.
Si Ouey had emigrated to Thailand shortly after the Second World War. He was employed as a gardener in Noen Phra, 200 kilometres south of Bangkok, Wikipedia said.
He was charged with the murder of seven children in Prachuap Khiri Khan, Nakhon Pathom, Rayong provinces and Bangkok between 1954 and 1958. When he was captured in 1958, it is said he was trying to burn the body of an eight-year-old. He admitted he had killed the boy and taken out the heart, liver, and kidneys for later dining.
After a trial that lasted only nine days, he was sentenced to life imprisonment. In the second instance, the appeal procedure ended with the death penalty.
On September 17, 1959, he was executed by a firing squad. The Siriraj Medical School requested his body for anatomical studies. He was then embalmed and exhibited in the Siriraj Medical Museum with the label “cannibal” as a deterrent to others. Even today, parents and grandparents warn young children when it gets dark to no longer take to the streets. “The child eater Si Ouey is coming to get you”.
This funeral is taking place after netizens registered with the website change.org in May last year asked Siriraj Hospital to remove the sign “cannibal” next to Si Quey’s embalmed body displayed in a glass box to return human dignity to the dead man.
The online campaign leader pointed out that Si Quey might not be a cannibal as has been understood by the majority of the people for decades.
After this online movement kicked off Siriraj Hospital removed the label “cannibal” and replaced it will one praising Si Quey by calling him “big professor.”
The hospital also announced that the dead man’s relatives should come and take his body for a funeral according to their beliefs.
However since then those who claim to be Si Quey’s relatives have not been able to produce documents to verify that they are related to him.
With no funeral having taken place, discussions among various government departments led to the conclusion that Bang Khwang prison should handle it.
Top: The embalmed body of Si Quey on display at Siriraj Medical Museum. Thai headline says, “announcing the search for Si Quey’s relatives.”
Below: Close up of Si Quey’s embalmed body. Photos: Sanook.com