Honorable Man Borrows Money from Neighbors to Save Sick Wife, Spends the Next 24 Years Paying Back Every Penny

24 years ago, when this poor Chinese man’s wife got sick, he had no money to pay for her treatment. Mei Guanghan, 66, had no choice back then but to borrow 70,000 yuan ($11,000) from hundreds of neighbors. Since then, he’s had just one mission – to repay every neighbor, down to the last penny. And here’s the good news – after years of sacrifices and living in poverty, he has managed to achieve his goal.

A long time ago, the Gunaghans were quite the happy couple with a 15 year old daughter, but their lives changed forever in 1990. Ren Chun’ai woke up early one morning in April and rode the tractor into town to buy some food. On her way back to the village, she was involved in a horrible accident. “In the mountains, two tractors were traveling in the same direction,” she said. “I took a sharp turn, the tires slipped and I fell into the valley.” She hit a rock and slipped into a coma soon after.

The medical fees required to save her life were huge, so he went from door to door, begging people for whatever cash they could spare. He carried a little brown book with him, carefully noting down the name of each person and the amount they had loaned him. He made a promise to all the donors: “One day I will be back, knocking on your door with your money.”


For the next 15 years, Guanghan saved up every single penny he could manage. After he accumulated a decent sum, he decided it was time to honor his promise, one neighbor at a time. This week marked the clearing of the final debt, and it was a true moment of celebration. He managed to pay back every household, except for four families who have since moved and could not be contacted. However, he still plans to track down the four remaining people and pay them back as well, even if it takes him the rest of his life to do it.

Guanghan is a farmer with a low income in Tingpang town, Zhejiang Province. He lives with his wife in a shabby one-bedroom house with almost no furniture. It’s remarkable how he managed to save all that money when he could barely afford to eat. But it does show his resilience, and genuine honor. “I had no other option open to me,” he said. “Honor is honor and I don’t believe in taking something for nothing.”


“He is a good and honorable man,” said his wife Ren Chun’ai. “So many others would have taken the money and not thought twice about it. He went poor all his life to pay these people back.” Besides saving money, Guanghan has spent the past quarter of a century caring for his wife. Even though the kindness of his neighbors saved her life, she is still paralyzed from the waist down, so Mei wakes up early each morning to clean and feed her. He has followed the same routine for 24 long years, because he believes his house would simply be empty without her.


Even though Guanghan has managed to repay all his debts, he has retained the little brown book as a reminder of his hard times. He wants to leave the book to his children, so they never forget how these well-intentioned people saved their mother’s life. “Do not be ungrateful,” he said sincerely.

Photos: ChinaNews

Source: ChinaNews

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