Elderly Guard Dies After Falling 25 Meters at Koh Ker Temple

A 71-year-old guard at Koh Ker temple died on Thursday, four days after he was seriously injured in a 25-meter fall at the ancient complex, Apsara Authority officials said Friday.

Prim Chin was not scheduled to work on Monday, but as usual turned up each day to guard the temple regardless of his obligations, according to Soeung Kong, deputy director-general of the Apsara Authority.

Prim Chin had been employed by the Apsara Authority since 2006, but previously worked for years at the temple, in Preah Vihear province, as a contractor for the Ministry of Culture.

Mr. Kong said that Prim Chin fell down four stories and crashed onto a stone platform on Monday afternoon.

“He hit his head and chest, which caused three points of fractures to his skull and serious chest injuries that affected the lungs,” said Mr. Kong.

Prim Chin was taken first to a private clinic in Kulen district’s Srayong commune, which said it was unable to treat him, before being transported to the provincial referral hospital.

Mr. Kong said hospital staff sent Prim Chin home after two nights when it was decided his injuries could not be treated. He died two days later.

“His death is not the result of a lack of money, it is because he was very seriously injured,” said Mr. Kong. Mr. Kong said that police had not examined the victim’s body because they did not think it necessary.

Chea Phallay, an Apsara Authority officer at Koh Ker temple, said the cremation of Prim Chin’s body took place Friday afternoon. Prim Chin’s family could not be contacted.

Mr. Kong said the Apsara Authority had already given Prim Chin’s family $300 to pay for the ceremony and would donate more, although he did not know yet how much.

Koung Lou, deputy director of the provincial referral hospital, declined to comment on Prim Chim’s treatment.

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