As you probably know already, Jason Chee, an avid Arsenal fan since he was 14 years old, received a letter on Wednesday this week, from Arsenal manager, Arsene Wenger in the mail.
I spoke to Jason about this very pleasant surprise, which awaited him in his mailbox.
Wednesday, 13 August had purely started out like any ordinary day for 31-year-old Jason Chee, who lost both legs and his left arm in a horrific navy accident in December 2012.
The Paralympic athlete and navy serviceman had been at home resting. Meanwhile, his father was collecting the mail.
Little did Jason suspect anything about the surprise waiting for him in his mailbox.
Didn’t have an inkling who the letter was from
And when his father told him that he had a letter from England addressed to him, Jason didn’t have a single inkling about who it could have been from.
And his reaction upon finding out that the letter had been sent from overseas, was one of complete puzzlement and total curiosity.
Said Jason, “When I saw the words ‘Air Mail’ and the other words ‘Royal Mail’, I was feeling very strange. I couldn’t think of who would send me a letter from overseas.”
Biggest surprise ever for Jason
But he opened the envelope… and staring right at him in the face was a letter from his favourite football manager, Arsene Wenger.
This was possibly the biggest surprise ever, in Jason’s life. It was really a big shock.
Said the Arsenal fan, “When I opened up the envelope, the first reaction was total surprise. I really could not believe it!”
In the letter, Wenger addressed Jason personally and said that he was sorry to hear about his injury and gave him his best wishes. As well, Wenger also thanked Jason for his continued support of the club.
“So I want to take this opportunity to say thanks for the best wishes that the Arsenal team have given to me,” said Jason.
Jason’s friends were surprised
Likewise, his friends too, were surprised by Wenger’s letter, but they are feeling happy for Jason.
One friend, also an Arsenal fan, had considered Wenger’s action a classy gesture by the manager and the club. Another friend even quipped that Arsenal had won over the whole of the Singapore Navy by sending the letter to Jason.
No idea how Wenger had possibly heard about him
Till today, Jason still has no idea how Wenger could possibly have heard about him and his horrific accident.
But when pressed to take a stab in the dark, he said, “Maybe there could be some secret person in Singapore helping me.”
Will frame up the letter
Jason will frame up Wenger’s letter and hang it up on his bedroom wall, because to him, it is a very precious and priceless gift, according to the Paralympic athlete.
After all, Wenger, who took over the Gunners in 1996, is indeed Jason’s favorite Arsenal manager – to the extent that the navy serviceman considers Wenger as the best manager in the whole world.
“He is a respectful and loyal manager whom I trust and love. I hope that Wenger can stay forever. I don’t want him to retire,” Jason said.
Hoping that Wenger can lead the Gunners to glory
And like all Arsenal fans out there, Jason is definitely hoping too, that Wenger will be able to lead the Gunners to glory in the upcoming season. After all, Arsenal have already broken their nine-year trophy drought, by winning the FA Cup last May, followed by the Community Shield last Sunday.
Said Jason, “My wish is to see Arsenal win the English Premier League and the Champions League. And with the new super signing of Alexis Sanchez and Calum Chambers, they will definitely motivate the team in defending and attacking.”
So if Arsenal do indeed fulfill Jason’s wish come May, then perhaps the letter will become many times more precious, to the navy serviceman.