Bekir Bıçakçı was one of the oldest among those, who were unlawfully imprisoned in Turkey after July 15, 2016. He was 73 years old when he passed away from brain hemorrhage, in the hospital where he was taken to from prison.

In August after July 15, 2016, police raided Bekir Bıçakçı’s house and toke him into custody. He was 70 years-old at that time, and he was sentenced to 6 years and 3 months prison, on charges of “being member of the Hizmet Movement, and aiding and abetting this organization”. Despite his old age, he lived in prison for 34 months.

On Saturday noon, April 13, 2019, he had a brain hemorrhage at Isparta Prison where he was staying. As his health condition was critical, they referred him to Antalya where medical services were more advanced. However, Gülten Bıçakçı was informed in the late afternoon that her husband had been sent to Antalya.

Mrs. Gülten Bıçakçı, who is the same age as her husband, arrived in Antalya, where she had never been before, on the first bus she had found. When she reached the hospital room where her husband was staying, he saw the gendarmes at the door. Whatever she did, she was not allowed to see her husband. She was asked to get permission from the police station. All night she wandered from one police station to another until sunrise, but could not get permission.

The next day, she ran between the prosecutor’s office, the courthouse, and the police station, but again could not see her husband. After two days and waiting at the courthouse until Monday noon, she was finally able to obtain a permission of five-minutes from the prosecutor. She saw her husband sleeping in a coma. She went to the courthouse again on Tuesday for permission, but this time she was told that she should get permission from the prison’s prosecutor. She struggled until late evening and succeeded to get another permission of five minutes. And he passed away… Gülten Bıçakçı had received news of death but could not see her husband’s body. The following day, after the autopsy report from Forensic Medicine, Bekir Bıçakçı ‘gained his freedom’ (words of Mrs. Bıçakçı) and was handed to the family.

From his retirement in 1994 until his arrest in August 2016, in his city Bekir Bıçakçı was known as the ‘Uncle Bekir of students’. He always rushed to aid the students. His wife Gülten Bıçakçı was also a retired teacher like himself. They had no children. They overcame their longing for a kid by putting themselves in shoes of the students’ parents, and rushed to their every need. Maybe they didn’t have any children, but they had countless students…Uncle Bekir of students spent all his income and wealth for this reason and rushed to aid until he went to prison. Gülten Bıçakçı, who was sentenced to 2.5 years of imprisonment for assisting the Hizmet Movement volunteers, had to go abroad.

After Bekir Bıçakçı, who had devoted himself to education, aid to students, charity and foundation activities, the following strings are left, written by his ward friend Veli Akın:

Gave confidence with sincerity

Prudent in the clairvoyance

He always remained calm, traveling far away

Either he spoke the God (or Truth) or stayed silent

Wrapped broken hearts with love

I don’t have a clue why he were here (in prison)…