BEIJING- Almost two months after he dashed to Beijing following the disappearance of his son’s flight, Yan Jiacheng finally left a hotel he shared with other desperate Chinese relatives, still clinging to the hope that he could be alive.
“I don’t want to leave of course, but I have no choice,” Yan told AFP as relatives drove him 800 kilometres (500 miles) home after Malaysia Airlines said it would no longer provide accommodation in Beijing.
Softly spoken and non-confrontational, Yan was one of the quiet ones at the Lido hotel in the Chinese capital.
The hotel became a powder keg of conflict between highly emotional relatives seeking answers about their missing loved ones, and airline officials and Malaysian government representatives stymied by the way flight MH370 vanished.
Yan’s younger son Yan Ling, 30, was one of the 153 Chinese passengers on the flight — making up two-thirds of those on board.
The last time the pair had spent time together was when Yan Ling returned to the family home for Chinese New Year in late January.
The annual pilgrimage is replicated in tens of millions of homes across the country, where high-achieving offspring often find work in the booming cities after university, rather than in their backwater hometowns.