Posco founder Park laid to rest

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Posco founder Park laid to rest


A thousand Posco employees and executives bow and pay their final respects to their late former chairman, Posco founder Park Tae-joon, during a funeral procession, which began at the Posco Center in Gangnam District on Saturday. Park was laid to rest at Seoul National Cemetery in Dongjak-dong. [YONHAP]

“Man of Steel” Park Tae-joon, the late honorary chairman of Posco, was laid to rest at the Seoul National Cemetery in Dongjak-dong, southern Seoul, on Saturday.

Some 600 people attended the funeral, including top political and government figures and foreign envoys.

Park Jyun-kyu, 86, former speaker of the National Assembly, chose not to read from his prepared eulogy, saying, “I will instead express a few words from my heart.”

Conveying sadness that he no longer had a friend to joke with, he said, “I respect him from the bottom of my heart for leaving after building up the country like this.”

He added, “In Korea’s younger days, it was a destitute country with citizens’ incomes averaging $500, but living nowadays is a difference between the sky and the ground,” crediting Park Tae-joon’s contributions to the nation.

The funeral procession started at the Posco Center in Daechi-dong, southern Seoul, where 1,000 executives and staff gathered to pay their final respects to the late founder.

At 1:30 p.m., as the procession came to a close, Park’s coffin, wrapped in the Korean flag, was buried in the section of the cemetery reserved for those who were of merit to the nation.

Prior to the funeral procession, a service was held at 7:30 a.m. at Severance Hospital in Sinchon, western Seoul, where Park died and his mourning altar was.

The founder of the nation’s biggest steelmaker died on the afternoon of Dec. 13 at the age of 84 from lung disease.

By Yum Tae-jung [sarahkim@joongang.co.kr]

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