​Doctor Li Mengtao on horseback, dedicated his youth on Beita Mountain!

Seetao 2021.08.27
  • Li Mengtao takes root in the frontier and contributes all his strength to the construction of the frontier of the motherland

On August 22, 2021, 73-year-old Li Mengtao was invited to tell the story of the villages and borders for 45 Shanxi Province aid cadres, and the audience was deeply touched. "When I first arrived at Beita Mountain Ranch, the regiment gave me a horse, a piece of felt, a medicine bag and a whip. With these belongings, I started a long tour..."

In the 1960s, Li Mengtao responded to the call of the state and came to the Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps from Shanghai, where he stayed for 57 years. He perennially stayed at the Beita Mountain Pasture of the Sixth Division of the Corps, which lacked medical care and medicine, to treat the herdsmen. From a vigorous young man to an elderly man with white temples, Li Mengtao dedicated the best time of his life to this land and people he deeply loves, and became a horseback doctor trusted by the local herdsmen.

From the bank of Huangpu River to Beita Mountain

"Go to the countryside, go to the frontiers, and go to the places where the motherland needs it most." In the 1960s, this resounding slogan made urban intellectual youths feel the call of the motherland's mother.

16 year old Li Mengtao

In 1964, the 16-year-old Li Mengtao secretly filled out the volunteer form without telling his parents, and signed up to work in the border areas of the motherland most needed. On May 16th of the same year, Li Mengtao received a notice: I hope that after you go to Xinjiang, under the leadership of the party, you will work hard and study hard to contribute all your strength to the frontier of the motherland. At this moment, his blood boiled over.

From the convenient living conditions of Shanghai to the arduous and desolate frontier, the sudden separation made it difficult for Li Mengtao's mother to accept. She tearfully helped her son pack his luggage and modify the size of the military uniform, while repeatedly telling him to take care of himself. Before leaving, Li Mengtao's father gave him a diary and wrote two lines on the title page: Asking She Qiu Tian, there is no big ambition. The world is a wizard. Li Mengtao said: "Father hopes that I will realize my value in life in the vast frontier world."

The westbound train started slowly, and the mother who was seeing off was in tears... A week later, Li Mengtao and a large number of Shanghai educated youth came to the Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps in the northwestern border from the bank of the Huangpu River in the east of the motherland. Arriving at the company, Li Mengtao immediately went into wasteland work. "I planted land and worked as a health worker. In 1972, I was assigned to the second team of Wulastai Animal Husbandry in Beita Mountain Ranch as a doctor." Li Mengtao recalled. Beita Mountain is located on the border of China and Mongolia, with an altitude of more than 3,200 meters. When he first arrived in Beita Mountain, Li Mengtao lived in a tent that was ventilated on all sides. The hard environment did not make him retreat. He kept in mind the responsibilities and missions of the soldiers of the Corps, and took root here.

Countless herders have been treated

"At that time there were 5 animal husbandry teams in the pasture, and more than 100 animal husbandry sites were scattered among the mountains. Because of the scarcity of grassland resources, most of the herders’ yurts were separated by more than 10 kilometers." Li Mengtao said, "Although the journey is far, as long as If the herders need it, we will be there on call."

One winter night, a Kazakh herder hurriedly came to Li Mengtao: "Doctor Li, my sister-in-law has a dystocia, and the child has not been born all day and night. Go and see her!" Li Mengtao hurriedly put on his coat, put the medicine box on his back, and jumped. Mounted on the horse and ran towards the herdsmen's house. Arriving at the herdsmen’s yurt, Li Mengtao inspected the mother and found that the fetus was in a horizontal position. He immediately performed an external reversal operation for her. After a busy night, the mother gave birth safely. Seeing that the mother and child are safe, the mother's husband Kaimai Dawuli excitedly pulled Li Mengtao and said, "You are really the savior of our family, please give my son a name." Li Mengtao raised his eyes and saw a round of red sun slavery. Dongfang rose, and said, "Let’s call Xiangyang!" Now, Xiangyang is over 40 years old. He is a driver of the ranch and has been in contact with Li Mengtao. He said that the savior should not forget.

"The ranch lacks doctors and medicines. The patients here regard doctors as all-rounders. Surgery, internal medicine, pediatrics, obstetrics and gynecology, all diseases are examined, so I made up my mind to study." Li Mengtao said. He studied medical books, improved his medical skills in various ways, and also learned fluent Kazakh, and soon became a "famous doctor" in Beita Mountain.

Li Mengtao sees a doctor for herdsmen

There is no blood bank at Beita Mountain Ranch. When patients are in urgent need of blood transfusion during surgery, Li Mengtao always stretches out his arm without hesitation as long as the blood type matches. On the way to the clinic, he fell off a horse and broke his tailbone, and he also fell into a horse with a horse. Ravines...For decades, the ditches and ridges of Beita Mountain have left Li Mengtao's footprints, and he has treated countless herders.

Dedication to the frontier without complaints or regrets

After Li Mengtao and his wife Chen Liling got married, they kept their homes in the field. Because of the herdsmen who had been living with water and grass for many years, they could only go home once in a few months. She had very long hair and beard, and she often scared her young daughter into tears. Li Mengtao had to hide outside the door and waited for her daughter to sleep before returning to the house. Considering the difficult environment of Beita Mountain, he organized several times to transfer Li Mengtao down the mountain to work in better places, but he refused. The tide of educated youth returning to the city began, and many people left, so he chose to stay. Li Mengtao said: "The herdsmen here need me, and I am reluctant to leave."

For decades, Li Mengtao has already integrated everything about himself into Beita Mountain. He can't forget that when he is out, it is the herders who left the best food for him, and the warmest blanket for him to cover, treating him as his dearest person. He loves the plants and trees of Beita Mountain and the simple and kind herdsmen here. "Take roots in the frontier like Populus euphratica and serve the motherland. Our generation of Bingtuan members have done it without complaint or regret." Li Mengtao said. This former side youth is often invited to give lectures and uses his dedication experience to encourage young people in the new era to take root in the grassroots and contribute to the frontier. Influenced by her father, Li Mengtao's youngest daughter, Li Jing, also studied medicine, and now works at the Qitai Hospital of the Sixth Division of the Corps, and continues to build the frontier just like her parents did. Editor/He Yuting