Amid continuing efforts to rescue people from the South Korean ferry Sewol, which tipped over last week at the country's bay, citizens of South Korea pay tribute to the heroic acts of 22-year-old Park Ji-young, who saved many lives from the sinking ferry shortly before dying under frigid waters 2.7 kilometers off of Gwanmaedo Island, the New York Times reports.
Park, who worked for the ferry as a crew member and a cafeteria worker, reportedly assisted in helping teenagers wear life jackets and escape the ferry. She stayed behind without a life jacket, despite other teens encouraging her to join them to the rescue boats. Park reportedly told the children:
"After saving you, I will get out."
"The crew goes out last."
Song Ki-Chae, one of the heads of the Chonghaejin Marine Co Ltd, which employed the ferry and its crews, paid tribute to Park and the heroic acts she did for the passengers of Sewol.
People online also dedicated their time to give messages of sympathy for Park Ji-young. On Reddit, hundreds of people described Park as brave and courageous. One redditor, Not--a--bear stated the following:
"She gave up her life to help save some younger people. That's saddening and enlightening at the same time.
It's enlightening because it shows that there are truly good people in the world.
It's sad, not because she died, but because she won't be remembered for nearly as long as the captain who was a coward."
A few netizens provided information on Park, although most of this information is yet to be confirmed by official sources. One redditor claims that South Koreans are getting the government to have Park buried at the National Cemetery, where past presidents, dignitaries, and wartime heroes have been previously buried.
Korean KG News reports that Park recently lost her father from a long battle with cancer and is solely supporting her mother and her younger sister. According to sources, she had to stop going to school so she could work and support the family.
An Inquisitr report last week revealed that there were as many as 450 people onboard the ferry, most of which were high school students from Danwon High School on their way to Jeju island.
South Korea's government is now currently being assisted by the US Navy in the search-and-rescue operations. US president Barack Obama has since sent his condolences to the families of those who died during the event.
Park Ji-young's body was later found dead, floating in the sea. Her acts of bravery will forever be remembered by those she saved from the ferry.
[Image from Reddit]