After Itaewon: Lee Ji Han’s Mother Shatters Hearts With A Devastating Letter To Her Late Son

Meanwhile, some phrases in the letter raise concerns for her health.

Content Warning

This article includes descriptions of crowd surge death that may disturb some readers.

On the tragic night of October 29, actor and former Produce 101 Season 2 contestant Lee Ji Han lost his life to the Itaewon crowd surge disaster that terrified South Korea.

Actor Lee Ji Han | @ji_han_0803/Instagram

Then, on November 11 KST, at the launch of a national petition to push for a special task force to investigate the disaster, the Democratic Party of Korea member Ko Min Jung read out loud a handwritten letter she received from the late star’s grieving mother (also posted on Lee Ji Han’s Instagram).

Ko Min Jung reading the letter out loud in Yeouido | Hankyoreh

Remembering him as “an angel who thought of others first,” Lee Ji Han’s mother bid the late star farewell.

A picture of Lee Ji Han as a baby, shared by his mother | @ji_han_0803/Instagram

Dear Ji Han,

You’ve always had such a prominent nose since the day you were born. You never gave me trouble when I was carrying you. I would feel around my tummy and check on you to make sure you were doing okay. Even when you were growing up, you were such a sweetheart that I swore I could raise 20 kids alone if they were all like you.

— Lee Ji Han’s Mother

Lee Ji Han’s mother shared how diligent the late actor had been working toward the premiere of an upcoming K-Drama Season of Kkokdu.

| Hankyoreh

You went through so much, working tirelessly for the Season of Kkokdu. Not once did you skip working out. And because you were on a restricted diet, you would ask me, ‘Mom, do you think it would be okay to for me to eat more?’ And that always broke my heart. We were so close to seeing the show air and having all of your hard work pay off… So I still don’t understand what went wrong. I keep refusing to believe the nonsense that has happened to us.

— Lee Ji Han’s Mother

Expressing complete devastation…

| Hankyoreh

I go to sleep with a picture of you by my head and your cellphone in my arms. It frightens me to know that the sun will rise another day. My heart races. Remember when you used to ask me if I knew how much you loved me? Remember how you used to hold and squeeze my hand whenever I’d come by your room? You’re my most prized treasure… How am I supposed to let you go, leaving me behind like this?

Hundreds of your friends came to the funeral, Ji Han. It made me realize your life had been on the right track. And that realization shatters me even more. It’s hard to find any reason for me to live on. Should I look for a way to leave this earth, too? If I have to keep living, then I would like to hide somewhere no one knows. I think about leaving everything behind and living in silence.

— Lee Ji Han’s Mother

…Lee Ji Han’s mother longed for her son.

| @ji_han_0803/Instagram

I’m afraid of the morning dawning. I’m afraid I’ll grow hungry, that I’ll end up putting food in my mouth. I would rather stitch my lips together. How am I supposed to keep living, Ji Han?

Even when you had something you wanted to buy, you put me first because you didn’t want to burden me. You always said you would afford it yourself once you made the money… I didn’t even know you did community service.

You truly lived by the words, ‘Let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth.’ You were the kindest spirit. An angel who thought of me and the others first. How am I supposed to let you go…?

— Lee Ji Han’s Mother

Questioning the government’s response (or the lack thereof) on the night of the disaster, Lee Ji Han’s mother ended the letter with words of desperation.

| Hankyoreh

When I saw the police escorting the limousine carrying your body, I felt torn to pieces. Was I supposed to be grateful for their help? Or was I supposed to be angry at them for not having been protecting the streets of Itaewon the same way and for making you end up in that limousine?

I’m still upset and in so much despair. I love you, son. I respect you and I miss you. I know how hard you worked, son. Is there really no way for me to ever see you again…? Dear god, please take me instead and give Ji Han back. Please, I beg.

My baby. I hope you’re resting in peace where you are… and I’ll follow you.

To my gem, from mom.

— Lee Ji Han’s Mother

Once posted to Instagram and circulated by the media, the heartbreaking letter resonated with those who also have lost loved ones.

| @ji_han_0803/Instagram

While some concerns were raised for the mother’s well being based on some of the phrases, Lee Ji Han’s fans and grievers from all over the world rushed to the comments section—leaving condolences and showering the bereaved with love and support.

| theqoo

  • “Ugh… I don’t have the words right now…”
  • “Man, I feel for her. I also have a son who is an absolute sweetheart and I treasure him. So I can’t even imagine how she feels. I tear up thinking about how she must feel, having lost the one soul that filled her heart.”
  • “Reading this made me sob.”
  • “I send the deepest condolences… I hope the mom takes care of herself and keeps living on.”
  • “Now that I have a son, I understand the sheer size of her longing for her son. I don’t think she hears the condolences right now. She misses her son and her heart longs for him. The sole thing she wants is to see him and hug him again, the apple of her eye… Losing a child has got to be one of the most excruciating thing that could happen.”
  • Sigh.”
  • “(Cries)”
  • “This is shattering my heart.”
  • “I have a son, too… I can only imagine how she feels right now. I’m in so much pain. Still, I hope she finds reason to live on. I hope she stays strong through this time of despair. Rest in peace, Ji Han.”
  • “Her handwriting looks like my mom’s. This is breaking my heart to pieces, especially because I’m the same age as Lee Ji Han. May he rest in peace and my condolences to his mother. I can’t fathom how much pain she must be in, but I hope she takes care of herself.”
  • “As a mother to a son, I can’t stop bawling… No one could possibly understand what his mom must be feeling right now.”
  • “There’s no way for us to even begin to understand how it feels for a mother to have lost her child… May Lee Ji Han rest in peace.”

Remembering Lee Ji Han: A Tribute To His Life And Work

Source: Hankyoreh and theqoo

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