CHINA> Regional
Quake survivor gets new donated house
Updated: 2008-12-16 14:59

CHENGDU -- The images of a poor farmer who brought his dead wife home after the Sichuan earthquake in May moved many in China.

Now, Wu Jiafang, 44, is about to get a new home donated by a company whose executives saw his story.

Wu, retrieved his wife's body from under debris, dressed her in her favorite rose-colored coat, tied her arms around his waist and drove her home on his motorbike on May 14, two days after the 8.0-magnitude earthquake in southwest China.

Wu's house was damaged and he has been living in a tent in the yard with his 21-year-old son. But winter has come, and in about three weeks he'll have a new 90 sq m home, built by a company based in the northwestern Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region.

"We saw Wu's story in the news and we made a decision," said Li Qunge, head of the technical center of Best House (Xinjiang) Housing Technology Development Co. Ltd.

"The company is providing the main materials worth 100,000 yuan ($14,600), while my colleagues and I will pay for the rest," said Li who is helping the reconstruction effort in the quake-devastated cities of Dujiangyan and Mianzhu.

"The new house will be built of steel, weighing just one-fifth of those built with bricks. It can withstand typhoons and 9-magnitude earthquakes."

Construction has started and is expected to be completed in 20 days.

"I am just a construction worker. I really thank them for building such a good house," said Wu, who called Li and his colleagues "Xinjiang brothers".