The decision by the widow of a man who died while having a massage outside the Pattaya Floating Market to pour out her grief online showed how baseless accusations can damage both people and businesses.
Janda Sakherm, 32, and Pannapa Udnoon, who posted the live video on Facebook of the incident, met the media at Kua Chaikao restaurant on Pratamnak Hill’s Soi Kasetsin 5 Nov. 3 after the video went viral and brought ridicule down on the Withi Thai Village shop connected to the floating market and 72-year-old masseuse Sakao Veeranan.
Janda clarified that her husband, Sombat Kuansuk, 37, of Nakhon Pathom, died of a pulmonary embolism and was known to have blood clots. But Pannapa maintained that she believed the massage caused blood clots to break loose and move to the lungs, although she could offer no medical proof to back up her assertion.
Despite their veiled accusation, the women insisted they didn’t blame Sakao or the shop, which sells souvenirs and herbs but is not licensed as a traditional Thai massage shop. They said they’re planning no legal action.
Pannapa said she posted the video online to be an example to people that they should consult a doctor before having massage treatments if they have a pre-existing condition.
While understandably grieving, the widow’s actions brought unwarranted scorn upon the shop, which is not owned by the Pattaya Floating Market but simply subleases space from it. Sakao’s niece, Patsinee Veeranan, said her aunt has become depressed and withdrawn following the incident and she feels guilty even though it was not her fault.
Sombat, while visiting Pattaya, stopped into the shop complaining of pain in a bruised leg that he injured playing football. About 30 minutes into the massage he started complaining of chest pain and couldn’t breathe. Some people attempted CPR, but he stopped breathing for 30 minutes before reaching the hospital where he was pronounced dead.