Wake Held for Late Choi Jin Sil′s Former Husband Jo Sung Min
Former baseball player Jo Sung Min was found dead on January 6.and police have been investigating the case, assuming it to be a suicide as all circumstances point in that direction.
The public is especially shocked by the death as it follows the suicides of his former wife, the late actress Choi Jin Sil and her little brother, the late actor and singer Choi Jin Young.
A rep from the Suseo Police Station said on January 6 that "Mr. Jo Sung Min was found dead at a studio apartment in Dogok-dong, hanged on a shower using a leather belt around about 12:16 a.m. to 3:40 a.m."
The rep added, "The [studio apartment] Jo Sung Min was found in was his girlfriend Ms. Park′s home, and we were unable to find any evidence that could establish the case as a murder, such as traces of a break-in. He sent a text message reading, ′There is no way I can continue living in Korea. I′m sorry, but just start believing that you have no son now,′ to his mother after Ms. Park demanded they break up."
It turned out Jo Sung Min also sent a Kakao Talk message to Ms. Park, saying, ′I′m sad that I can′t be with you in my last moment of life. I hope you continue to live on."
Based on this evidence, police have assumed that the death is a suicide. They, however, have still requested an autopsy from the National Institute of Scientific Investigation in order to clear up the cause of death.
A source close to the family said on January 6, "We decided to agree to the autopsy because the time of death and the time the body was found don′t match up."
Family and friends have, of course, also been voicing shock at the tragedy that has claimed nearly an entire family. The voices especially speak in concern of the Hwan Hee and Joon Hee siblings, who have lost their mother, uncle and now their father.
The children will act as the chief mourners at the wake being held at the hospital of the deceased′s alma mater. Jo Sung Min′s sister Jo Sung Mi is also listed as a chief mourner.
Another official from the Suseo Police Station said, "The family is suffering the most. Please stop digging into this case any more. I believe it′s not respectful not only toward the deceased but also toward the children."
As public opinion has seemed to agree that the tragedy should be left alone for the sake of the family, police have decided not to hold any further briefings on the incident.
The former agent of the deceased, Mr. Son Duk Ki, opened up carefully on the issue at the wake, saying, "I couldn′t see any signs that Mr. Jo Sung Min was thinking of suicide. We wished each other a Happy New Year; I never imagined something like this would happen."
The wake is taking place quietly with only a few acquaintances dropping by to offer their condolences.
A rep from Doosan, the team the deceased previously coached for, said, "Ever since he quit coaching, the team had been unable to contact him. I believe the seniors and juniors who had been close to him in the baseball world will come to the wake individually."
The autopsy will be held on January 7, and the coffin will be borne out on January 8.
Jo Sung Min wed the late actress Choi Jin Sil in December 2000, but the couple divorced in September 2004. Choi Jin Sil committed suicide in October 2008.
Photo credit: Joint photo press
- Choi Jin Sil 20130107