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Public raises funds for victim’s family

June 17,2017
After a window cleaner lost his life last week when a resident of a high-rise apartment in Yangsan, South Gyeongsang, severed his safety line because he was listening to loud music, people across the country have begun donating to help his surviving family.

The first to respond was Ungsangstory, an internet community active in the Yangsan area. Their fundraising event, from Wednesday to Thursday, raised 42 million won ($37,021) from 1,000 individual donations.

“At first I thought it was just an absurd incident,” said Jin Jae-un, the website manager, “but after seeing the follow-up article and thinking how the widow and five children were going to live, I began the fundraising campaign.”

“When the members linked an article about his family,” said Park Seon-hui, the manager of another internet community, Love Yangsan Mom, “there were many calls to raise money. About 300 members gave around 3.5 million won total.”

Corporate Korea joined in as employees of BNK Kyongnam Bank gave a total of 10 million to the bank’s internal Lily Sharing Community.

“I offer my sympathies and condolences to the family who lost a husband and a father through an unspeakable crime,” said Lee Seong-cheol, the president of the Lily Sharing Community and head of the Kyongnam Bank regional development public relations department. “I will meet with the surviving family shortly to give them the money and offer them a bit of solace.”

“Though it’s not a lot of money, I want to help the family regularly,” said one Toronto resident. “Tell me how I can help them.”

While police are not publicizing the family’s contact information, they provided a bank account number for the victim’s widow, surnamed Kwon: Nonghyup, 121045-56-066438.

“There are many inquiries about how to help the family so we set up an exclusive information line [at the Yangsan police station],” said Oh Dong-uk, a member of the murder investigation team. The number for the information line is 055-392-0394.

“I’m extremely grateful for those who are helping my family,” said Kwon, the widow, “whether financially or by sending words of encouragement.”

BY WE SUNG-WOOK [hwang.hosub@joongang.co.kr]