Singaporean in US hit-and-run needs help with S$630k hospital bill

Singaporean hit by vehicle chased by police in New York suffers critical injuries. (Screengrab from Facebook)

[UPDATED July 22, 11am: Adding information on Al-Matin's hospitalisation costs]

The worst is over for Al-Matin Mohamed, after a horrific cycling accident in New York – but he now has more to worry about.

The Singaporean was moved out of intensive care and continues his recovery from head trauma, broken legs and a fractured pelvis amongst other injuries.

His stay at Bellevue Hospital in New York will take another three months, and is set to rack up a whopping bill of US$500,000 (over S$630,000) in total, according to close friend Yang Sheng Chuan.

Earlier this month, Yang posted an update on a Facebook group dedicated to raising funds for Al-Matin, revealing the “lawyers estimate” of the 24-year-old’s hospitalisation costs and adding that the bill as of 8 July stood at US$250,000.

Yang also said that Al-Matin’s travel insurance would only cover up to 15% of the amount. He later announced that the group had collected over S$29,000 as of 16 July.

Al-Matin, a budding pastry chef, was cycling along East 29th Street in New York on 8 June when he was hit by a getaway car and flung across the street, as reported by New York Daily News.

Eyewitness Cecilia Cargill, 36, said, “His [Al-Matin's] feet were on the sidewalk. The rest of his body was on the street. He was fighting, fighting, fighting.”

Cargill added, “At first he was unconscious, but then he opened his eyes. I told him not to give up… He was dying. I started praying."

“He looked into my eyes as I was praying for him. It looked like he was saying, ‘I’m dying, pray for me.’ ” 

The hit-and-run driver was escaping from police after a mugging, and ran over a cop’s foot and knocked down a pedestrian moments before plowing into Al-Matin. He remains at large.

Al-Matin was in the US for a one-month training stint at Le Bernardin restaurant in Manhattan. Prior to that, the National Service Guards officer studied at culinary school Le Cordon Bleu in Sydney. He is an alumnus of Commonwealth Secondary and Anglo-Chinese Junior College.


After the accident, Al-Matin's elder sister Karina Sydney Nadiah expressed her thanks for numerous posts and messages from his friends expressing concern online, adding that Al-Matin's ward is under round-the-clock police guard.

"He did not give up on us, neither did he give up on himself," she wrote on Facebook. "We all know that being the guardsman he is, the fighting spirit never died."

Upon reading about the tragedy, many of Al-Matin's friends showed support by posting words of encouragement on his Facebook wall, describing him as a “strong” man, a “fighter” and someone who will “never give up”.

Lau Kar Loon, 24, who was in the same platoon as Al-Matin while serving National Service, described him as a very "self-disciplined" and "ambitious" person. Lau also said Al-Martin was a "natural leader" and "one of the most outstanding cadets" in his platoon.

Nur Hakim Azmi, 24, who was from the same secondary school as Al-Matin described him as “determined” and “a great role model”. He added that Al-Matin was known for his football skills.

Contributions to Al-Matin can be made by:

-  Cheque to "Mohamed Hussain bin Ahmad" (Al-Matin's father), mailed to 257 Pasir Panjang Road Singapore 118623

-  Bank transfer to DBS Savings 288-5-002558 (an account opened by Yang specifically to raise funds for Al-Matin)

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