Leaving Korea for USA
© by Terry Chay on flickr

Leaving Korea for the USA

From my aunt’s e-mail thread.

The attached photo is of us at Kimpo airport waiting to board a flight to the USA. We all look miserable and sad because we are leaving life as we knew it back then. I remember the propeller plane, so loud. I remember waking up from a nap on the loud plane and heard my siblings talking to each other — hard for me to believe because they hadn’t spoken to each other for more than a year (and used me as a messenger when they needed to communicate).

Leaving Korea for USA
Leaving Korea for USA

Left to right: ?, Aunt Tamaye, Uncle Francis (in front of Aunt Gia), Grandma, Dr. Tae-Bong Kim, Teresa (my mom)

This photo was taken in 1954, the year after the Armistice Agreement.



The person between mom and Teresa is a chemistry professor where we took shelter for 3 months after the N. Korean troop came to Seoul.

Do you remember his name?

(My grandfather was already a professor in the United States at the outbreak of the Korean War, so he spent the entire war in the United States, separated from his family.)


Kim Tae-bong, is what I remember.  Does it sound familiar to you?


That is correct. He is Prof. Kim, Tae-Bong, who had a stack of books, which we used to sneak in to take out to read during the refugee era in Seoul.

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