Korean Celebrities Who Committed Suicide

Famous Korean celebrities or personalities who died the tragic way by committing suicide, seems so strange and weird for me. In spite of their fame and success, why should they end their life, although some of these celebrities in Korean movie or music industry, made names and became most popular celebrities.

1)  Lee Eun-ju

Lee Eun-ju

Lee Eun-ju

Lee Eun-ju is a South Korean actress, born on December 22, 1980 and was found dead on February 22, 2005, by committing suicide at age 24. Lee Eun-ju was known for her roles of hit films and Korean dramas such as Taegukgi and The Scarlet Letter.  She first appeared in a lead role as the title character in all acclaimed director Hong Sang-soo’s films such as Virgin Stripped Bare By Her Bachelors, where Eun-ju gave one of the most memorable performances. She was also teamed in 2001 with actor Lee Byung-hun in the hit Bungee Jumping of Their Own film in 2001, and also in a hit melodrama, Lover’s Concerto, opposite Cha Tae-hyun. Lee Eun-ju also appeared in the very popular Korean Drama, Phoenix in 2004, and later that year she starred in her last featured film, The Scarlet Letter by Daniel H. Byun, which screened as the Closing Film at the Pusan International Film Festival in 2004. Few days after her graduation from Dankook University, Lee committed suicide on February 22, 2005 night, at age 24, at her apartment in Bundang, Seongnam. Lee Eun-ju slit her wrists before she hanged herself.The grieving family of Lee, stated the reason of suicide because of extreme bouts of depression and mental illness, and has been suffering from insomnia because of her nude scenes in The Scarlet Letter.

2)  Kim Daul

Daul Kim, 20

Daul Kim, 20

Kim Daul was born on May 31, 1989 and died on November 19, 2009 when she committed suicide at age 20, was blogger, painter, model and an international South Korean fashion model. Kim Daul has appeared on the covers of Vogue in South Korea in August 2007 and May 2008 and in July 2008 appeared in Harper’s Bazaar. In 2007, Kim Daul made her international catwalk debut at Paris Fashion Week, and worked  for top designers such as Karl Lagerfeld, Vivienne Westwood, Chanel, Alexander McQueen and Christopher Cane to showcase their latest collections. Kim also modelled for H & M and GAP. In 2009, Kim modeled for Next when she moved to Paris, France where her modeling career was developing. Shortly before her death Kim Daul had appeared on the cover for Russh, the Australian magazine, as well as video advertisements for Topshop, Richard Nicoll and Chanel. On November 19, 2009, Kim was found dead at age 20, and hanged in her apartment in Paris. The prosecutor’s office in Paris ruled Kim Daul’s death as a probable suicide. Kim described that she was suffering from insomnia, and confessed that she is hurting herself, and also suffering depression and had frustration towards the fashion industry for a long time, in which she voiced her personal issues in her own weblog, and in her paintings.

3)  U;Nee

Heo Yoon_(singer) or U; nee, 25

Heo Yoon_(singer) or U; nee, 25

U;Nee  born Lee Hye-Ryeon and later changed her name to Heo Yun, was born on May 3, 1981 and died on January 21, 2007 after committing suicide. U:Nee, was a South Korean singer, rapper, dancer and actress. Before dedicating her career to music, She was first known by her birth name Lee Hye-Ryeon, then she legally changed her name to Heo Yun. She then used the second stage name U;Nee professionally after her debut as a singer, until her death. U;Nee debuted as a dance-pop singer in 2003, with upbeat songs, though in some of her songs, she rapped in many of them, as can be heard in her very first single. U:Nee’s record label started to market her as a sexy singer, in 2005, and focus more on her image, while transforming her dance-pop style music into a sexy R&B sound, as in her 2005 single, Call Call Call. U;Nee has underwent plastic surgery, for breast enlargement in the process and having slight surgery on her jaw and nose. U;Nee often performed her dance skills, as she was known before and after her debut as an excellent dancer. U;Nee was found hanged and committed suicide on January 21, 2007, in her home in Seo-gu, Incheon, South Korea. U:Nee’s mother held a press conference at the hospital after her death and confirmed that U;Nee was suffering from early bouts of depression, and taking medication, and having problems dealing with the pressures of fame, and her personal problems. On January 26, 2007, five days after her death, the management company of U;Nee released her third album as planned.

4)  Jeong Da-bin 

Jeong Da Bin, 26

Jeong Da Bin, 26

 Jeong Da-bin was a South Korean actress, born on March 4, 1980 , and committed suicide 0n February 10, 2007 at the age of 26. Jeong Da-bin was best known for the popular television series Rooftop Room Cat (also known as Attic Cat or Cat on the Roof) and her costar Kim Rae-won rose to fame, and the series was a hit, among teenagers and adults. Jeong was best known for her cheerful and positive image, and in 2004 Jeong became a lead star in her first film, the romantic comedy He Was Cool in 2004, alongside co-star Song Seung-heon based on the Guiyeoni‘s  internet novel. Jeong then returned to television, in My 19 Year Old Sister-in-Law, starring alongside with Yoon Kye-sang. Jeong’s last project was in 2005’s That Summer’s Typhoon with Han Ye-seul, which did not do well in the ratings. On February 10, 2007, Jeong Da-bin was found hanged with a bath towel on February 10, 2007, in the bathroom of her boyfriend’s house in Samseong-dong, Gangnam District southern Seoul. According to Jeong’s boyfriend, identified by his last name Lee, Jeong was drunk while hanging out with friends at Cheongdam-dong nearby bar, and Lee took Jeong back to his house. At 7:50 a.m. Lee, discovered Jeong’s body hanged and called the police, and said the actress had been recently suffering from severe depression over her lack of work, the imprisonment of her previous manager, and discrimination about her physical appearance on the Internet. Jeong’s family and agency requested an investigation, suspecting a foul play, however the postmortem concluded that it was suicide. Jeong Da-bin was cremated, and her remains was placed at Cheonga Park in Ilsan, Gyeonggi Province. Jeong Da-bin’s death, which occur shortly after singer U:Nee‘s death in January 21, 2007, sent shock waves throughout Korea and sparking concern over copycat suicide.

5)  Choi Jin-Sil

Choi Jin-sil, 39

Choi Jin-sil, 39

Choi Jin-Sil was a famous South Korean actress, born on December 24, 1968, and died on October 2, 2008. Choi was considered one of the best actresses in South Korea, known as The Nation’s Actress. Choi began her career as an advertising film model in Korea’s entertainment circles, and began to gain fame as celebrity in an advertising campaign for Samsung Electronics, in which she played the role as a newly wedded housewife. She became a TV actress in 1988, starring in the 500 Years of Joseon, an MBC historical drama. Choi’s first film was 1990’s North Korean Partisan in South Korea. Also in 1990, she played leading roles in the movie My Love, My Bride and in 1992’s MBC drama Jealousy. Actress Choi Jin Sil, married pro baseball player Cho Sung-min in 2000, however, in 2004, their marriage ended in a divorce. After her divorced, Choi stayed out of the limelight, raising her two children, a son born in 2001, Hwan-Hee and a daughter born in 2003, Joon-Hee. Choi returned with the soap opera My Rosy Life in 2005, in a role that rose her career, and her last work was in 2008’s The Last Scandal of My Life. Choi hosted a talk show Choi Jin-sil ‘Truth and Lie’ in 2008. Choi’s former manager Bae Byeong-Su, who was an influential figure in the entertainment field, was murdered by her road manager in 1994 . Choi was called in as a witness, and rumors began to spread, that she was implicated in the crime and Choi was defamed by unspecified individuals. In 1995, Choi had a traffic accident, and also she was almost abducted in 1994 and 1998. Choi often suffered stalking. Cho Sung-min, committed a breach of marital fidelity, violence and defamation against his wife, Choi Jin-sil, for about two years from 2002 to 2004. Cho physically attacked Choi Jin-sil, who was then pregnant with their second child in November 2002, and assaulted his wife Choi in August 2004. Choi took the parental rights and child custody over the children on condition of exempting Cho’s debt to Choi’s mother and brother as well as dropping several charges against Cho, who could only visit his children regularly according to the mutual agreement.The South Korean family register or hoju, was changed in January 2008, and as a result, children could use their maternal family name if the family members wanted it to change. So her children’s surname Cho, paternal family name, was changed to Choi as maternal family name, according to the changed register. On October 2, 2008,  Choi Jin-Sil committed suicide by hanging, at her home in Seoul, and was confirmed by the police. Choi was survived by her two children, her mother and younger brother Choi Jin-Young, who also committed suicide a year and a half later. Her mother managed the inheritance and took custody of the children after Choi’s death.

6)   Choi Jin-young

Choi Jin-young, 39, (image credit:www.impactlab.net)

Choi Jin-young, 39, (image credit:www.impactlab.net)

Choi Jin-young , South Korean singer and actor, and the younger brother of actress Choi Jin-sil, was born November 17, 1970 and died on March 29, 2010. In 1987, Choi made his debut as a television commercial model and started his career in acting three years later. In 1993, Choi Jin-young rose to fame with the popular TV show Our Paradise, because of his resemblance to his elder sister, actress Choi Jin-sil which gave him a start in his acting career and in various dramas on television and films and commercials. In 1999, Choi was struggling with his acting career, and so after completing military service, he returned as singer to the stage and was known for his stage name as SKY. Choi’s first album Final Fantasy was a success with the popular Forever single which becomes hit in music charts. In 2004, Choi Jin-young released his third and last album, and returned to acting in 2007, in a supporting role in the series It’s OK Because I Love You, but failed in ratings.After his sister’s death, Choi Jin-young was suffering from depression. According to his friends, Choi made several suicide attempts and in 2009, he had his stomach pumped for drug overdose. Choi relied on nonprescription tranquilizers he bought from a pharmacy, and refused to see a doctor in spite of his mother’s plea. Choi was found by his mother, and a woman named Chung (who was his junior in college), hanged himself with an electrical cord in the attic of his apartment on March 29, 2010 in Nonhyeon-dong, Seoul. Chung notified Choi’s mother and the two hurried to his home together, when Choi did not answer the phone. Choi’s mother and friend Chung, called the police and a 119 rescue squad around 2:14 p.m. Choi Jin-young was rushed to Gangnam Severance Hospital for CPR at 2:46 p.m. but was later pronounced dead on arrival. Choi Jin-young’s body was cremated and buried next to his sister, Choi Jin-sil, at the Kapsan Cemetery in Yangpyeong, Gyeonggi Province. Choi Jin-sil’s ashes were stolen from her burial site on August 15, 2009. The surveillance camera images showing a man carrying out the theft helped the police to hunt for the suspect . The police found the suspect on August 25, 2009, and arrested him and and found inside his home, Choi’s ashes, and were placed in the new tomb in the park in the Gapsan Park Cemetery in Yangpyeong on September 28, 2009. Security devices have been installed to her new grave to prevent a theft recurrence.

7)  Cho Sung-min 

Cho Sung-min  (image credit:ksdfkhsdfjksdfk.blogspot.com)

Cho Sung-min (image credit:ksdfkhsdfjksdfk.blogspot.com)

Cho Sung-min was born April 5, 1973 and died on January 6, 2013, was a South Korean professional baseball player with the Yomiuri Giants of Japan. Cho Sung-min is best known for his much-publicized marriage and divorce from actress Choi Jin-sil. In 1998, Cho Sung-min first met actress Choi Jin-sil on the set of a television show, which during that time, Cho was one of the league’s all-star team members and was a promising baseball player, while Choi was famous actress in several films and TV dramas in the 1980s and 90s and was dubbed as the nation’s actress. In 2000, Cho and Choi married in a lavish wedding ceremony. However, a few years later the couple became controversial figures in Korea when the couple accused each other of being unfaithful and divorced in August 2004 after Cho Sung-min was arrested for beating his wife. In 2007, Cho, the ex-baseball star remarried but since 2010 it was rumored that they separated. In October 2008, after actress Choi Jin-sil committed suicide by hanging, her ex-husband, Cho was involved in a dispute with Choi’s bereaved family as he sought custody of his son Hwan-hee and daughter Jun-hee. Singer Choi Jin-young, Choi Jin-sil’s younger brother, considered his brother-in-law, Cho’s move as a step to take over his late sister’s wealth which will be inherited by the late actress’s children. Cho gave up his rights over her property, and the case was settled and the children were left in the legal custody of their maternal grandmother. On January 6, 2013, Cho Sung-min’s body was discovered in the bathroom by his girlfriend, named Park, of her apartment on January 6, 2013,  in Dogok-dong, southern Seoul, at around 5:26 a.m. According to the Suseo Police Station’s investigators, Cho drank three bottles of soju on the night before his death, with his 40-year-old girlfriend, Park, during which she told him she wanted to end their relationship, and she then left her house at around midnight to meet a friend, and returned at 3:40 a.m. and  found Cho hanging using his own belt, from the bathroom shower. On January 8, 2013, Cho’s body was cremated and the remains were buried at the Bundang Sky Castle Memorial Park.

8)  Ahn Jae-hwan

Ahn Jae Hwan, 36

Ahn Jae Hwan, 36

Ahn Jae-hwan, was a South Korean actor born on June 8, 1972, however some sources said he was born on June 8, 1974, and was married to South Korean actress comedienne Jung Sun-hee. In September 8, 2008, Ahn Jae-hwan, was found dead at the age of 36, in his car, but the exact time of his death has not been revealed, although the police confirmed that he had died several days before his decaying body was found, and was considered as a suicide by carbon monoxide poisoning. Ahn’s death was linked to actress Choi Jin Shil by the media, and according to rumors, that due to his apparently debts, Ahn  was in distress and committed suicide. Jung Sun-hee and Jin-sil had been close friends for a long time, at Ahn Jae-hwan’s funeral Choi appeared deeply shaken. Rumors circulated on the internet that Choi, as a loan shark, and had lent a large sum of money to Ahn. Choi Jin-sil sought a police investigation into the source of the rumors, on September 22, 2008, telling them groundless. Police arrested a securities company employee for spreading the rumors on September 28, 2008.

9)   Jang Ja-yeon

Jang Ja-Yeon, 29 (image credit:kpophot.com)

Jang Ja-Yeon, 29 (image credit:kpophot.com)

Jang Ja-yeon  was born on January 25, 1982  and found dead on March 7, 2009, was a South Korean actress. Jang Ja-yeon has starred in the KBS TV drama series Boys Over Flowers  as Park Sun-ja (aka Sunny) one of the three Mean Girls Trio (Jin Sun Mi). Jang Ja-yeon had been suffering from depression, and a police investigation concluded that her death was a suicide. After Jang Ja-yeon’s death, it caused a national scandal when news emerged that Jang had been sexually and physically abused  during her career, by a number of prominent entertainment executives during, and that this abuse had led to her depression. Jang had been living with her older sister and younger brother since the death of their parents in 1999 in a traffic accident. Jang had been suffering from clinical depression and received medical treatment for years for her illness before she committed suicide. On March 7, 2009, Jang Ja-yeon was found dead at age 29, hanged at her home in the Bundang district of Seongnam, Gyeonggi province. Jang’s sister went home at 7:42 p.m. to their shared home, and found her sister’s body hanging from the stairway banister, after unable to reach her on the phone. A police investigation concluded that her death was a suicide, and found no evidence of foul play. In her suicide note, Jang Ja-yeon, describes how she was beaten and forced to entertain and have sex with several program directors, CEOs and media executives, that caused debate about relations in the entertainment industry, and also  a police investigation into her management agency. Jang claimed that her agent Kim Sung-hoon according to South Korean reports, had regularly beaten her and forced her to have sex with a string of VIPs, including directors, media executives and CEOs. her agent Kim Sung-hoon, denied the accusations, who was at that time was in Japan, and was later, was arrested in Tokyo, Japan in June 2009 because of overstaying his visa. The Korean police requested extradition for Kim Sung-hoon on a warrant related to Jang’s death. Kim stated during his arrest, that he “committed a crime in South Korea and overstayed in Japan to avoid being arrested,” and he was sentenced to one year in prison, two years of probation and 160 hours of community service. Jang Ja-yeon remains was cremated and were buried next to her parents in Jeongeup, North Jeolla province.  

10)   Park Yong-ha 

Park Yong-ha, 32

Park Yong-ha, 32

Park Yong-ha was a Korean actor and singer, born on August 12, 1977  and found dead on June 30, 2010 at age 32, by committing suicide. Park co-starred in 2002 Winter Sonata as Kim Sang-hyeok alongside Bae Yong-joon and Choi Ji-woo, which made him famous celebrity in Japan. As a singer, Park was the mysterious voice behind Just For Yesterday, as a singer, in the hit theme song of SBS drama All In, which starred Lee Byung-hun and Song Hye-kyo. Park released various Japanese albums in Japan and held successful concerts both in Japan and Korea. On June 30, 2010, Park Yong-ha, was found dead by his mother at 5:30 am at his home in Nonhyeon-dong, Seoul, he committed suicide by hanging from a camcorder charger cable. Park is said to be under pressure while managing his entertainment company, his career and was coping with his father’s cancer. Park did not leave a suicide note. After his death, The Yona School in Chad was founded by his co-stars and friends, such as Kim Hyung-jun and Park Hee-soon. Park Yong-ha has also appeared in 2000 drama Sunflower, in KBS 2001’s Snowflakes, 2002 Loving You, also in 2002 KBS Winter Sonata, 2004 Tokyo Wankei, 2008 On Air, 2009 The Slingshot and many other shows.

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