(Minghui.org) A 79-year-old woman grew increasingly worried on December 4, 2018 when her daughter didn't show up in the morning as usual on her way to work and her cell phone went unanswered all day.

She was dealt a heavy blow when she later confirmed that her daughter had been arrested again the night before for practicing Falun Gong, a mind-body discipline persecuted by the communist regime since 1999.

The elderly woman had lost her husband in the persecution, and her younger daughter had to flee the country to avoid being arrested again for her faith. Having relied on her older daughter to take care of her, she is left in despair.

Her 21-year-old grandson now comes from college to help out twice a week. A goodhearted neighbor is also helping her prepare some meals.

Widowed As a Result of Persecution

This is the second time that the elderly woman has seen tragedy strike her family. Back in July 2001, her two daughters and her husband were arrested together for refusing to renounce Falun Gong.

Her then-four-year-old grandson (her older daughter Ms. Liu Rehan's son) burst into tears when she picked him up at the kindergarten and told him that his mother had gone on a very long business trip.

While her two daughters were given three years of forced labor, her husband was sentenced to eight years in prison. He suffered three strokes in the prison and was released one year after his imprisonment. Fearful of suffering more persecution, he never picked up his practice of Falun Gong again.

Two months after her two daughters were released, her husband passed away in September 2004 after suffering another stroke.

Older Daughter's Family Shattered

While her older daughter was detained at the labor camp, the elderly woman's son-in-law, a police officer, divorced her daughter. She took her grandson in while her two daughters and husband were detained.

In addition to raising her grandson with her meager pension income, the elderly woman traveled frequently between three different detention facilities to visit her family and send in money for them.

When her older daughter came back home, the younger woman was heartbroken to see her son become distant and hateful toward her as a result of the slanderous propaganda against Falun Gong taught by his teachers at school. It took years for her to fix her relationship with her son, who later became supportive of her practicing Falun Gong.

Upon her release, the older daughter returned to work at an elementary school. Instead of allowing her to teach again, the school leadership was pressured by the authorities to assign her miscellaneous jobs. She didn't complain and still did her job well.

Younger Daughter Flees the Country

With her advanced age, the elderly woman developed heart problems and high blood pressure in recent years. She received a critical condition notice last year because of a cardiac arrest. Meanwhile, she developed back problems, couldn't stand for too long, and had to rely on her older daughter to cook for her.

Her younger daughter, Ms. Lily Liu, moved to Australia in 2007 to avoid further arrests. Lily is calling on the Chinese government to immediately release her older sister and all other detained Falun Gong practitioners.

Related report:

Sydney, Australia: Falun Gong Practitioners Call for Release of Family Members at Rally Outside Chinese Consulate