Choi Jin-young Laid to Rest
By Han Sang-hee
Rain fell outside the Gangnam Severance Hospital as family and colleagues of the late actor Choi Jin-young bid their tearful farewell to the 39-year-old, Wednesday.
The funeral service took place at the hospital at 8 a.m. His mother Chung Ok-sook, and dozens of family members and other entertainers took part in the service.
Choi was found dead in an apparent suicide Monday at his home in Nonhyeon-dong. Police said Tuesday that he had suffered from depression after his top actress sister Choi Jin-sil took her own life 18 months ago.
When a video of Choi and his elder sister filled the screen, friends and family wept.
The actress' two children whom the actor had taken care of did not attend the service.
As fellow actors and friends carried the coffin, his mother screamed out his name sobbing, "How could you go, leaving me behind? How can I live without you?" The coffin was then taken to Hanyang University, where Choi enrolled last year to study acting. It is the school where his sister wanted him to study.
At the school, a group of students at the acting department held a street ritual to mourn his death. "You were our hero and we will not forget you," a student read.
Choi's body was cremated and buried next to his sister at the Kapsan Cemetery in Yangpyeong, Gyeonggi Province.
The older Choi, one of Korea's top actresses, committed suicide Oct. 2, 2008 after suffering from depression since her divorce and also amid rumors circulating on the Internet that she was involved in the suicide of fellow actor Ahn Jae-hwan, who was reportedly under pressure to repay overdue loans owed to loan sharks.