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Mourners bid actor Park YongHa last farewell

Grieving mourners from both South Korea and Japan bid farewell Friday to a popular South Korean actor and singer who committed suicide earlier this week.

A funeral ceremony was scheduled for Park Yong-ha, 33, who killed himself Wednesday in distress over career and family pressures, the latest in a string of high-profile suicides in the Asian country.

Park’s suicide stunned South Korea and neighboring Japan where he was one of the most popular South Korean celebrities. One of his fans was said to be Japan’s former first lady, Akie Abe.

About 100 wailing fans — mostly Japanese women in black mourning attire — stood outside a hospital and surrounded the hearse carrying Park’s coffin to a cremation site, briefly preventing it from departing. One tearful fan held up a T-shirt expressing love for the late actor. Another reached out to touch the vehicle.

Police have said Park had been under stress because he had to juggle management of his entertainment company and career while his father was fighting stomach cancer. The actor had been taking sleeping pills due to insomnia, police said, citing Park’s mother.

Park debuted in the late 1990s and starred in the 2002 television drama series “Winter Sonata,” which was also watched by fans in Japan and Southeast Asia. He held several concerts in Japan and released eight CDs there.

He was supposed to hold 12 concerts across Japan from July 2 to Aug. 22 and the tickets were sold out, according to Japanese record company Pony Canyon Inc.

South Korea has the highest suicide rate among the 30 nations in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.

Choi Jin-sil, one of South Korea’s most famous actresses, committed suicide two years ago. In March, her younger brother, Choi Jin-young, also an actor, killed himself in Seoul.

Former President Roh Moo-hyun jumped to his death in May last year while embroiled in a widening corruption scandal.



22 Responses

  1. Man, I get so mad when I read comments online about how he was weak etc. for doing this. As if anyone can know how he felt, what he went thru. It`s so disrespectful to his family and friends. I am praying for more openness and understanding, but from the look of things…maybe I`m just naive for thinking like I do. I feel sorry for all those fine people mourning him.

  2. gosh, so ji soeb’s carrying his pic. It’s always your next of kin like bro or sis. Or son or daughter. They must have been really close.

  3. So sad. This is so tragic. He was one of my favorite actor 😥 This is too shocking. I even can’t believe it when the first time I see the news T.T I’ve watched some of his dramas & loved his great acting so much.

    Rest in Peace, Park Yongha. You’ll always be in people’s heart.

  4. i still cry whenever i see his suicide news…oh God..oppa…still so sad n can’t believe this is really happen ~ R.I.P YongHa oppa! I will def super missing u ❤

  5. reading the article n all the comments made my heart cried… I like him n he surely be missed by everyone who knows him… Farewell Park Yong Ha… May u RIP… T___T

  6. I’m still shock and sad over this. I never thought this would happen to one of my favourite actors. I was looking forward for his new drama *sob*. He’s surely be missed. *sob*.

    I’ve been through depression once and I hate recalling those time. no matter how many people try to help you, your mind won’t take it. It somehow burden you more and the pressure will keep on adding. I hope other entertainers and artists won’t do this anymore.

    RIP Park Yong Ha.. condolesence for his Family and Friends. May they be strong to go through this ordeal.

  7. Jiseob and him were real best buddies, able to felt how much pain he’s having now. RIP.

  8. YongHa… we really…not willing to let you go..:(
    Will never ever forget you..
    Love you, YongHa..
    Please find you own deserve happiness in another world…

    Only if i could go to Korea 1 day, i hope i could find this “Bundang Memorial Park” to pay a respect to you..

    I hope JiSub, Hero and few other great frens could spare some time for Park family, especially YongHa’s dad & mum.. This is such a tough time for them…
    Be strong Park’s family

  9. i cant plive that 😦

    really sad

  10. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Eileen Teo and far hana. far hana said: Mourners bid Park Yong Ha farewell https://sookyeong.wordpress.com/2010/07/02/mourners-bid-actor-park-yongha-last-farewell/ […]

  11. Deepest Sorrow on the passing of Dear Park Yong Ha~~~
    Farewell Bright Star, May You Shine Brightly Up in Heaven~~~

  12. just too sad for words

  13. RIP Park Yongha!

  14. it really shocking to see him past away….
    my mother was just watching On Air last week…..

  15. As difficult it is to understand why someone chooses to do this and as much as you question the presence or lack of friends and families’ help, you will never know the true story; as the person who does is Park Yong Ha.

    With a career based in acting, he may have been doing what he does best, masking his true sufferings in front of friends and family.

    I just really hope that this celebrity “trend” does not continue. It is extremely heartbreaking to even read about.

  16. RIP Park Yong Ha.

  17. This is so sad. I just saw more pictures on asiae news website. So Ji-sub was leading the coffin-bearing procession and Japanese fans crying out for late actor Park Yong-ha. 😦

  18. Of all celebrities suicide for the past few years, this is the one that makes me sad the most.

    To some people it’s a cowardly act, but to him who’s been suffering for the past 14 years, suicide is the last resort. I wonder for 14 years, where are all his friends/family during his ups and lows? Why can’t they offer help when he was still alive?

    • It may sound very simple to ask for help but people who suffer from depression RARELY if ever ask for help. Depressed people feel alone, and no one knows how they really feel. It’s hard to ask for help when it’s not clearly written on his face. He probably acted like a happy go lucky normal kind of guy with the usual stress from work. There are signs of depression but it’s not clearly written. Also, depression is sorta taboo in South Korea. Society will automatically write them off as the ‘crazies.’ Ok maybe pinpointing SK is a bit much, but I think in general the asian culture writes it off as taboo. So even though PYH was depressed and had been suffering there’s only so much a person can do to help. If offered the help, they may or may not accept it.

      His friends & family were probably there for him, we don’t know that but we can only assume so. However, there’s only so much they can do to help. PYH also had insomnia. Insomnia + depression = bad bad combo. 😦

      RIP Park Yong Ha. You will be missed.

      • Excellent comment. It’s obvious that his friends in the entertainment industry (and probably non-celebs) cared greatly about him based on their reactions to his suicide. Besides grief, the strongest emotion seems to be shock–several of his friends said he was such a seemingly happy guy, that they couldn’t understand, and they couldn’t pinpoint why he did it, which means PYH didn’t necessarily communicate his troubles/worries with those closest around him.

        May he rest in peace, and I hope that South Korea begins to recognize depression as a serious disease deserving treatment, not scorn.

  19. ;__; So Jisub looks really sad. It’s very hard to see pics of all the mourners 😦

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