Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Inchek Bedah bt Mohd Yusope 1938-2018

Full name: Inchek Bedah bt Mohd Yusope
Call names: Bapak referred to her as Che Bedah. Baharin Tamby addressed her as Kak Bedah. I called her Mak Bedah.
DOB: Khamis, 1 Ramadhan or 25 October 1938 at 1:55 pm (previous DOB was 29 June 1938)
Deceased: Saturday, 3 February 2018, about 6.43 pm. She passed away at a nursing home in Jenderam area.  She is laid to rest at Yayasan Al-Jenderami, Grave No 150. The graveyard is near Bangi/Dengkil in Selangor.



1938-1948 Early days in Banda Hilir, Malacca
1945-1957 Schooling in Malacca and KL
1957-1963 PJ Studying
1963 onward Working
1967 Lived in PJ house
1973 onward  Took care of nieces and nephews
1980s Visit Thamby Ahmad in Singapore
1985-1989 Photos with Bapak and Mak
2015 Azizah's wedding reception in Jengka
2016 Anak Kak Salmah's wedding reception in Malacca
2016 Nurul Akmar's wedding reception at Tanah Merah, Kelantan
2016 Lived at Al Jenderami
2017 Cousins's children's wedding
2018 Admitted to HKL and died


Mak Bedah was born on Thursday, 1 Ramadan or 25 October 1938 at 1:55 pm in the afternoon. On Mak Nya's record written in Jawi, she was Inchek Beda (lahir Khamis 1:55 petang, 25/10/1938).

Mak Bedah explained that when she was to be born, her mother suffered hemorrhage for 4 days (Nenek Inchek tumpah darah 4 hari).

Mak Bedah said she was born a dark ugly baby (lahir lebam dan hodoh) (I think this could be cyanosis?). Her father had wanted to name her Siti Zabedah, a legendary name in Malay folklore - a heroine, but because she was born dark and ugly, her father found that name unsuitable for her and gave her a better name, Inchek Bedah. Inchek was added to her name as a sign of respect and to avoid abuse (aniaya). In this way, people would not make fun of her or belittle her. So Mak Bedah grew up with that name.

Her sibs

Mak Bedah is the #12 child of 15 sibs.

Her 7 sisters are Ainon (Mak Ainon), Zaina (Che Nah), Ramlah (Mak Lah), Sara (Mak Sarah), Rahmah (Jame'ah/Mak Nya), Safura (Bik Wa) and Inchek Sekmah (Mak Sekmah). Mak Semah is the only younger sister of Mak Bedah. The other 6 sisters were older than Mak Bedah.

Her 7 brothers are Idris (died), Shamsu'ain (died), Abu Bakar (Pak Bakar), Abdul Rashid (my Bapak), Jaafar (Pak Cik Pau), Baharudin (Pak Din), and Saleh (Pak Saleh). Idris and Shamsu'ain died as infants. Her other 5 brothers survived to adulthood, married, and had families. Pak Bakar, my Bapak, and Pak Cik Pau were the elder brothers of Mak Bedah. Pak Din and Pak Saleh are the younger brothers of Mak Bedah.

After all her other sibs died, Mak Bedah and Pak Saleh are the only 2 surviving sibs left.

This is Mak Nya's flawless record of her sibs, written in Jawi (obtained from Muzlifah Abdul Aziz):

1. Ainon (lahir Ahad, 10 pagi, 6/2/1921)
2. Idris (meninggal)
3. Zaina (lahir Khamis, 12 malam, 3/4/1924)
4. Ramlah (lahir Sabtu, 5 pagi, 29/9/1925)
5. Shamsu'ain (meninggal)
6. Sara (lahir Khamis, 6 petang, 3/5/1928) ... Mak Sarah (kakak) is before Mak Nya
7. Abu Bakar (lahir Khamis, 7:28 malam, 19/3/1930
8. Abdul Rashid (lahir Sabtu, 3:20 petang, 28/11/1931) .... my Bapak
9. Rahmah (lahir Rabu, 7:30 pagi, 15/11/1933) .... Mak Nya (adik) is after Mak Sarah
10. Safura (lahir Selasa, 8:27 malam, 21/5/1935)
11. Jaafar (lahir Ahad, 11:05 pagi, 28/8/1936)
12. Inchek Beda (lahir Khamis 1:55 petang, 25/10/1938)
13. Baharudin (lahir Jumaat, 6 pagi, 14/6/1940)
14. Inchek Sekmah (lahir Khamis, 12:20 pagi, 13/11/1941)
15. Saleh (lahir Khamis, 6:30 petang, 12/2/45)

Mak Bedah's oral account of her sibs:
  1. Ainon (Che Non)
  2. Zainah (Che Nah)
  3. Ramlah (Che Lah)
  4. Abu Bakar (Abang; Pak Kau)
  5. infant, deceased before age 1
  6. infant, deceased before age 1
  7. Abdul Rashid (Abang Rashid, Rashid; my Bapak)
  8. Rahmah @ Jame'ah (Nya; Mak Nya)
  9. Safurah (Kak Wa; Bik Wa)
  10. Jaafar (Pak Cik Pau)
  11. Inchek Bedah (Che Bedah; Mak Bedah)
  12. Baharudin (Badin; Pak Din)
  13. Sekma (Sekma, Mak Sekma)
  14. Mohd Salleh (not sure whether there is Mohd in his name)
  15. There should be altogether 15 sibs. Mak Bedah had missed out Mak Sarah's name. 

Jamaliah (anak Mak Nya) said Mak Sarah's name is before her mother's name.
According to Mak Nya's record in Jawi script, Mak Sarah is #6 and Mak Nya is #9. Mak Sarah was born in 1928, and Mak Nya was born in 1933.
Mak Bedah said she is #11. She said Bapak is #5 if we excluded the 2 babies who died as infants. If we include the 2 deceased infants, then Bapak is #7.
According to Mak Nya's record in Jawi script, Mak Bedah is #12 and Bapak is either #6 or #8. Bapak is #8 including the 2 deceased brothers. Bapak is #6 excluding the 2 deceased brothers.
Early life

Mak Bedah lived in Banda Hilir.

Mak Bedah at Pulau Besar in 1948.

Siblings in Banda Hilir, Malacca circa 1948/1949/1950/1951/1952/1953/1954. Seated from left are Pak Saleh (3), Mak Bedah (10) and Mak Sekmah (7). Bik Wa (13) is standing.

Mak Bedah in Banda Hilir

Walid's demise

Nobody knows for sure when Mak Bedah's father (Walid) died. Bapak too could not recall when his father died.

According to Nenek Inchek, her husband Walid died just before Bapak returned to Malaya from overseas (England).

Bapak was attending the Malayan Teachers Training Program at Kirkby College, near Liverpool in England between 1951-1953. When I was going through Bapak's correspondence letters between his father and him, the correspondence seemed to have ended abruptly. I wondered why? What had happened? So Walid could have died after posting this particular letter with B/W prints.

Mak Bedah said that her father died when she was 10 years old. She sat at his feet when her father died.

Mak Bedah was born in October 1938. She would be 10 years old in October 1948. But Bapak and his Walid were still in Malacca in 1948. There is a group photo of Walid's family and his relatives at Pulau Besar in 1948. So Walid did not die in 1948.

Bapak was in the first batch of trainee teachers at Kirkby College in England. Bapak left the King Edward VII Medical School in Singapore in 1951, to go to England. Bapak sailed to England via the Suez Canal. Bapak was in England from 1951/52 to 1953/54. Bapak probably returned to Malaya in late 1953 or early 1954. So, Walid could have died between late 1953 and early 1954, before Bapak returned from England and reached Malaya. Mak Bedah would have been 15 or 16 years old then when her father died in 1953/54. Bapak was probably just 23 years old at the end of November 1953 and early 1954. Bapak returned to Malaya to enter into teaching at Jasin English School, probably in late 1953/early 1954. He returned home an orphan. Bapak married Mak in December 1955 when they were 24.

Walid died on 4 January 1954. This date was given by Bapak to Nuraishah, my eldest daughter.

I remember asking Nenek Inchek about Walid's demise. Nenek Inchek said Walid died and Bapak returned home to Malacca, about a month after Walid died.

After Walid died

These could be Hari Raya Aidilfitri photos. The family did not celebrate Hari Raya Aidiladha as nobody was a Haji or Hajjah then.

Also, Pak Ji Usop went for Hajj in 1954.

Photos of Mak Bedah and siblings after Walid died. Bapak brought them up after Walid died.
  • Born 1938
  • Primary school in Malacca 1945-51
  • Secondary school in Malacca 1952-54
  • Tunku Kurshiah College in KL 1955-57

Mak Bedah went to school in Malacca. She probably attended a convent school in Banda Hilir, which was close to home.

I have never heard which school she attended. I don't recall her handwriting. Convent girls usually have beautiful handwriting.

She later attended the Malay Girls' College in Kuala Lumpur, which later became Tunku Kurshiah College in Seremban, and later re-located to INSPENS.

There were only a few Malay girls who went to school during her time. Most Malay ladies stayed home.

Mak Bedah spoke good English.

Mak Bedah as a schoolgirl in Malacca.
Photos from Bapak's pendrive of 2009.
Student life

When I knew Mak Bedah, she was a big girl and studying in KL. She was to be a teacher. She became a teacher, but only for a short while. We often visited her at her flat. She often came to visit us at 56 Jalan Day in Alor Star, Kedah in Jan 1964- May 1967.

All of us at home watching B/W TV at the Government quarters for teachers at 56 Jalan Day, Alor Star in Kedah, 1964-1965. Mak Bedah (27) is at far left, seated at rear. Nenek Inchek (58) is seated at far right. Mak (34) is seated at second right. I'm seated on the settee (7). Beside me is Pah (8), then aunty Khamsiah and who (hidden)? with Farid (4) on her lap. Abang Sharif (10) is playing at rear.

Working life

When I knew her she was a student or a trainee teacher and she lived in a small Chinese flat. We visited her at the flat and she served us crispy round salty biscuits, which we enjoyed.

When she was working, she often took us out to dinner for steamboat, up on a hill somewhere quite dark. She helped us with the steamboat as nobody knew what it was and what to do. Steamboat was the in thing. It tasted nice. Tom yam came much later, in the 1980s.

Mak Bedah worked for Johnson and Johnson (J&J) private company in PJ.

Photo was supplied by Fida, 22 Feb 2018

Mak Bedah's short biography when at J&J.
Photo was supplied by Fida, 22 Feb 2018

She came to Zainab Primary School (2) in Telipot, Kelantan where I was studying in Standard 5A (afternoon session). She gave a talk on how to use female sanitary napkins. We girls all laughed because we didn't have our menses yet and nobody knew what she was trying to teach us.

Mak Bedah travelled to each state to introduce or sell J&J sanitary napkins in vending machines. They were something new to the Malaysians. She drove so fast on the tiny country roads of Terengganu. I remember travelling with her on one of the trips and I can tell you, even our racing drivers today cannot drive like she did many years ago. She drove so fast and it didn't matter whether we were going uphill or coming downhill, she just drove stone dead. My intestines could fly out every time we went flying off the high point of a road! She said I was a coward.

Mak Bedah worked very hard and climbed up the corporate ladder. She became a J&J executive. But she was unhappy with J&J gratuity when she retired. She felt really cheated after being a faithful worker. I felt sad for her.


Mak Bedah was married to a man whom we called Pak Hitam.

Mak Bedah married to Pak Hitam. I remember seeing this wedding photo before as a small girl. This photo was supplied by Fida Sabihim, wife of Kamarul Akhir anak Pak Zan, 22 Feb 2018.

Pak Hitam was in RTM or something. I can only remember his face and that he was a big dark man, and a smoker. They lived up on a big hill called Signal Hill in Kuala Lumpur. We visited them one night and had dinner at their big bungalow.

Pak Hitam had 8 big grown-up sons when he married Mak Bedah. I met all 8 of his sons at dinner on Signal Hill. One of them was Johari (Jo).
Johari (Jo) was in Business Management at Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM) in Penang. I met Jo and wife Fauziah, who visited my family in Perth while I was doing my PhD. They stayed with us for a few days while visiting Perth for a short course. They brought along their little daughter.
Later I heard that Mak Bedah had divorced him. She never re-married after that even though she was pretty. From Mak I learnt it was about a talisman (tangkal), which she was forced to wear against her will. Wearing the talisman is against Islamic belief and is forbidden.


Mak Bedah wore stylish clothes as a Malay lady. I thought she looked glamorous in whatever she wore. I borrowed 2 of Mak Bedah's baju kurung when I was overseas. I borrowed a plain dark blue modern baju kurung and wore it to the Hari Raya at UC Davies. Another one was a light green modern baju kurung, which I wore to a Japanese wedding at Stanford University.

When I first started working with USM in Penang, I didn't have any baju kurung to wear to work. Mak said to borrow from Mak Bedah while I got mine sewn by Kelly of Jalan Siam, Penang. We went to PJ to get some clothes from her. I borrowed 3 pairs of baju kurung. In 1982, Mak Bedah was 44 and a bit plump and I was very thin. I had to wear pins for Mak Bedah's baju kurung. They fitted me well and I enjoyed wearing her baju kurung to work. They were quite stylish too.


After she left J&J, Mak Bedah worked as a private Malay-English translator or tutor in Subang (near airport area), but I don't recall for whom.

PJ Residence

Mak Bedah bought a corner terrace house at Seksyen 14 in Petaling Jaya, when this part of PJ was first opened and empty in the early 1970s. The terrace houses and house plots were extremely small compared to the big colonial British Government bungalows which we had lived in.

The shops along the road to her house were built much later. They were an eyesore.

Her PJ residence was close to her place of work - J&J in PJ.

Mak Bedah later renovated her house while raising 6 adopted nieces and nephews (2 anak Mak Nya and 4 anak Bik Wa).

She bought an adjacent terrace house across the road for her niece Dora Rafidah bt Abdul Aziz (Dora).

The rest of the 5 children married and moved out.

Mak Bedah's cousin Haji Tamby bin Haji Ahmad (anak HABHAL) and wife came from Singapore to Jamaliah's wedding reception at Mak Bedah's house in PJ. Haji Tamby's younger son Baharin posted 2 photos of Jamaliah's wedding in Messenger to me on 20 March 2016. My parents and I attended the wedding reception, but we did not enter the house as there was a large crowd and the house was small and overcrowded. It was a hot sunny day.

Mak Bedah later sold her house to live at a retirement village.

Dora moved to be closer to her brother Rahim's place.

Visit Kelantan May 1999

Mak Bedah and Pak Saleh came to visit me when I was about to deliver my youngest child, Yusrina Faqihah bt Affandi, on 29 May 1999. They visited me after delivery at Hospital USM (HUSM) in Kubang Kerian, Kelantan. They were excited to see my new addition.

Visited Pak Din & Che Nah before Year 2000

Before Che Nah died in 2000
Before Mak died on 5 June 2004
Before Pak Din died on 18 August 2006
Before Bapak died on 8 March 2009
Before Mak Bedah died on 3 February 2018

Mak Bedah and her surviving siblings, before 2006. Standing from left are Che Nah/ Zaina (#3) and Mak Bedah (#12). Men seated from left are Pak Din (#13), Bapak (#8) and Pak Saleh (#15).
From left: Mak Bedah (#12), Pak Din (#13) and Mak, before Mak died on 5 June 2004.
Visit Singapore before January 2012

Mak Bedah and Pak Salleh & family visited Singapore. They visited their cousin, Haji Tamby bin Ahmad.

Pak Salleh's family in Singapore before 2012

Al Jenderami retirement village

She re-settled at a retirement village called Kompleks Yayasan Al Jenderami and joined the other elderly ladies. I don't know the place as I have never been there.

Masturah at Mak Bedah's place at Kompleks Yayasan Al Jenderami.
Photo from Mas's FB.

Mak Bedah (76) at her pondok at Kompleks Yayasan Al Jenderami
Photos at Jenderami from Mastura in FB

Visit Singapore January 2012

Later, Haji Tamby Ahmad's wife, Hjh Hajijiah bt Sulaiman, passed away on 22 January 2012. Pak Salleh and family and Mak Bedah visited Haji Tamby bin Ahmad in Singapore.

Haji Tamby Ahmad's family, Pak Salleh's family, Nurul Akmar's family, and Mak Bedah after Hjh Hajijian had passed away on 22 January 2012.

Visit Pahang 2015

Azizah Ramli anak Rabi's wedding reception in Jengka, Pahang

I met Mak Bedah again at kenduri kahwin Azizah bt Ramli (anak Rabi'ah) at Dewan Al-Falah, Sekolah Menengah Kebangsaan Jengka Pusat, Pahang on 26 December 2015. She seemed healthy, jovial and talkative as usual. She said I am a replica of my mother. She said I am BIG now.

Mak Bedah (77) talking to my elder sister Sharifah (Pah, 58) at Azizah's wedding reception on 26 December 2015 in Jengka. Kak Fatimah Atan anak Mak Sarah is standing behind them.
Visit Kelantan 2016

Nurul Akmar anak Pak Salleh got married 5 July 2016

I met Mak Bedah at Pelangi Mall in Kota Bharu when she came for Nurul's wedding reception in Tanah Merah, Kelantan on 5 July 2016. Nurul Akmar is anak bongsu Pak Saleh.

We were at Nurul's apartment at Pelangi Mall in Kota Bharu, Kelantan.
Nurul Akmar is anak Pak Saleh.
Mak Bedah (73)

Suhaila anak Pak Salleh gave birth

Mak Bedah with anak Suhaila. Suhaila (anak Pak Saleh) gave birth to her first child after Nurul got married. 

With visiting relatives

Photos were supplied by Fida, 22 Feb 2018


Admitted to Al-Islam Specialist Hospital, KL
11-15 Jan 2018

16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22 Jan 2018 - where was she?

Admitted to Hospital Besar Kuala Lumpur
23 Jan 2018, 4:30 pm A&E
24 Jan 2018 Urology & Nephrology ICU

25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31 Jan 2018 - where was she?

1, 2 Feb 2018 - where was she?

Final days

Nursing home
Deceased: Saturday, 3 February 2018, about 6.43 pm, at nursing home


Arwah Mak Bedah.
Photo was supplied by Fida, 22 Feb 2018.
Mak Bedah passed away on 3 February 2018, about 6.43 pm. She passed away at a nursing home in Jenderam area (message from Aminah, my youngest sister). Inna lillahi wainna ilaihi rojiuun.


  Mak Bedah is laid to rest at Yayasan Jenderami graveyard (message from Aminah, my youngest sister). She is laid to rest at Yayasan Al-Jenderami, Grave No 150 (email from Fida, 22 Feb 2018). Inna lillahi wainna ilaihi rojiuun.

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