Man makes 400 shoes to repay childhood debt

Updated: 2012-02-21 17:29


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Man makes 400 shoes to repay childhood debt

Tan Kecheng works on crafting cloth shoes at his home in Southwest China’s Chongqing on Feb 20, 2012.

A deep gratitude can be powerful enough to drive a person to persist in repaying for 10 years, even decades later.

To repay the kindness of his neighbors, a 51-year-old man with infantile paralysis in Southwest China's Chongqing has made nearly 400 pairs of cloth shoes for them in the last 10 years, Chongqing Business Daily reported Tuesday

Tan Kecheng got a fever at the age of 2. His parents had no choice but to keep him at home as they could not afford to take him to the hospital.

A visiting neighbor learned of Tan's situation three days later and mobilized other residents in the area to donate money for Tan's treatment. Tan's family finally collected enough money and took Tan to the hospital.

Tan was saved but left with infantile paralysis. During the following years, Tan's mother constantly told him to keep in mind the kindness of his neighbors.

Then Tan started to make cloth shoes with his own hands 10 years ago and began giving them to the neighbors who helped him. To make the shoes, he goes out with his walking stick to collect materials, such as used clothes and abandoned tires, as his only income is the social subsidy of 600 yuan ($95) a month.

It takes Tan two days to a week to make a pair of cloth shoes. Over the years, Tan has made nearly 400 pairs of cloth shoes for his neighbors.