SHINee Lead Singer And K-Pop Star Kim Jonghyun Dead At 27 Leaving Behind A Suicide Note

South Korea’s K-Pop music industry is known to train boys and girls at an early age intensely as the first step into stardom and getting signed on to a major label. Its vigorously competitive nature makes K-Pop the most influential genre across the globe with an unreal amount of support within its fandom.

The shocking news was announced on 18th December 2017 confirming the death of Kim Jong-hyun, better known as Jonghyun at the age of 27. He was one of the five members of SHINee, an OG K-Pop boy band formed by SM Entertainment in 2008.

Kim Jong-hyun (Image: Yonhap)

Jonghyun was found in his studio apartment in Chungdam, North of Seoul unconscious on Monday evening and was rushed to the Konkuk University Hospital before being pronounced dead. A call was made by his sister to the authorities after receiving alarming text messages indicating suicidal tendencies a few hours before the tragic incident.

Related Article: We Need To Talk About Depression

SHINee’s agency, SM Entertainment confirmed the death of Kim Jong-hyun in a press statement, “Jonghyun loved music more than anybody else and he was an artist who did everything to perform his absolute best on stage. It breaks our heart to have to bring this news to fans who loved Jonghyun so much. Please refrain from reporting on rumors and guesswork so the family of the deceased can honor him in peace. As per the wish of the family, the funeral will be held quietly with his relatives and company colleagues. Once again we show our deepest condolences to Jonghyun on his last journey.”

According to KoreaBoo, a close friend and artist Nine9 from K-Pop group ‘Dear Cloud’ has also released Jonghyun’s final goodbye in a heart-wrenching suicidal note.

. 종현과 마지막 인사를 하고 왔어요. 웃고 있는 영정사진을 보고서도 저는 여전히 종현이가 제게 다가와 이 모든 게 꿈이었던 것처럼 웃어줄 것 같았습니다. 얼마 전부터 종현이는 제게 어둡고 깊은 내면의 이야기들을 하곤 했어요. 매일같이 많이 힘들었던 것 같아요. 불안한 생각이 들어 가족들에게도 알리고 그의 마음을 잡도록 애썼는데 결국엔 시간만 지연시킬 뿐 그 마지막을 막지 못했습니다. 아직도 이 세상에 그가 없다는 게 믿어지지 않고 너무 괴롭습니다. 지금도 이 글을 올리는게 맞는 건지 겁도 나지만 종현이 본인이 세상에서 사라지면 이 글을 꼭 직접 올려달라고 부탁을 했어요. 이런 날이 오지 않길 바랐는데… 가족과 상의 끝에, 그의 유언에 따라 유서를 올립니다. 분명 저에게 맡긴 이유가 있을 거라고 생각해요. 논란이 있을 거란 걱정도 하고 있습니다. 하지만 그마저도 예상하고 저에게 부탁을 했을 거란 생각에 제가 종현이를 위해 할 수 있는 마지막 일을 해야겠다고 결정했습니다. 이제라도 종현이 혼자가 아니었다는 것을 알아주길 바라요. 그리고 수고했다고…정말 잘했다고… 잘 참아줘서 고맙다고 얘기해주세요… 아름다운 종현아 정말 많이 사랑해 앞으로도 많이 사랑할게. 그곳에서는 부디 아프지 않고 평안하기를 바라. . . 유서 전문입니다. . . 난 속에서부터 고장났다. 천천히 날 갉아먹던 우울은 결국 날 집어삼켰고 난 그걸 이길 수 없었다. 나는 날 미워했다. 끊기는 기억을 붙들고 아무리 정신차리라고 소리쳐봐도 답은 없었다. 막히는 숨을 틔어줄 수 없다면 차라리 멈추는게 나아. 날 책임질 수 있는건 누구인지 물었다. 너뿐이야. 난 오롯이 혼자였다. 끝낸다는 말은 쉽다. 끝내기는 어렵다. 그 어려움에 여지껏 살았다. 도망치고 싶은거라 했다. 맞아. 난 도망치고 싶었어. 나에게서. 너에게서. 거기 누구냐고 물었다. 나라고 했다. 또 나라고 했다. 그리고 또 나라고했다. 왜 자꾸만 기억을 잃냐 했다. 성격 탓이란다. 그렇군요. 결국엔 다 내탓이군요. 눈치채주길 바랬지만 아무도 몰랐다. 날 만난적 없으니 내가 있는지도 모르는게 당연해. 왜 사느냐 물었다. 그냥. 그냥. 다들 그냥 산단다. 왜 죽으냐 물으면 지쳤다 하겠다. 시달리고 고민했다. 지겨운 통증들을 환희로 바꾸는 법은 배운 적도 없었다. 통증은 통증일 뿐이다. 그러지 말라고 날 다그쳤다. 왜요? 난 왜 내 마음대로 끝도 못맺게 해요? 왜 아픈지를 찾으라 했다. 너무 잘 알고있다. 난 나 때문에 아프다. 전부 다 내 탓이고 내가 못나서야. 선생님 이말이 듣고싶었나요? 아뇨. 난 잘못한게 없어요. 조근한 목소리로 내성격을 탓할때 의사 참 쉽다 생각했다. 왜 이렇게까지 아픈지 신기한 노릇이다. 나보다 힘든 사람들도 잘만 살던데. 나보다 약한 사람들도 잘만 살던데. 아닌가보다. 살아있는 사람 중에 나보다 힘든 사람은 없고 나보다 약한 사람은 없다. 그래도 살으라고 했다. 왜 그래야하는지 수백번 물어봐도 날위해서는 아니다. 널위해서다. 날 위하고 싶었다. 제발 모르는 소리 좀 하지 말아요. 왜 힘든지를 찾으라니. 몇번이나 얘기해 줬잖아. 왜 내가 힘든지. 그걸로는 이만큼 힘들면 안돼는거야? 더 구체적인 드라마가 있어야 하는거야? 좀 더 사연이 있었으면 하는 거야? 이미 이야기했잖아. 혹시 흘려들은 거 아니야? 이겨낼 수있는건 흉터로 남지 않아. 세상과 부딪히는 건 내 몫이 아니었나봐. 세상에 알려지는 건 내 삶이 아니었나봐. 다 그래서 힘든 거더라. 부딪혀서, 알려져서 힘들더라. 왜 그걸 택했을까. 웃긴 일이다. 지금껏 버티고 있었던게 용하지. 무슨 말을 더해. 그냥 수고했다고 해줘. 이만하면 잘했다고. 고생했다고 해줘. 웃지는 못하더라도 탓하며 보내진 말아줘. 수고했어. 정말 고생했어. 안녕.

A post shared by 9 (@run_withthewolf) on

Please note that it’s being posted with permission of Jonghyun’s family and it was his wish for it to be shared to the public. Originally posted in Korean as seen above but it has been translated below as accurately as possible.

Warning: some may find the following content distressing.

I am broken from the inside.

The depression that slowly gnawed away at me has finally swallowed me whole.

And I could not defeat it.

I detested myself. I grabbed my disjointed memories and yelled at them to pull themselves together but was met with no response.

If I can’t help myself breathe properly it’s better to stop breathing at all.

I asked myself who was responsible for me.

Only I.

I was utterly alone.

It’s easy to talk about the end.

It’s hard to actually end.

I lived until now because of that difficulty.

I told myself I wanted to run.

Yes, I wanted to run.

From myself.

From you.

I asked who was there. It was me. It was me again. And it was me yet again.

I asked why I kept losing my memories. It was because of my personality. I see. So It’s all my fault in the end. I wanted people to notice but no one did. They’ve never even met me so of course they don’t know I exist.

I asked why they live. They just live, just live on.

If you ask why I die I would answer I am exhausted.

I have suffered and pondered. I never learned how to turn this exhausting pain into bliss.

Pain is just that, pain.

They scolded me not to do this.

Why? Why can’t I even end things the way I want to?

They told me to find out why I hurt.

I know too well. I hurt because of me. It’s all my fault and all because I’m lacking.

Doctor, is this what you wanted to hear?

No. I have done nothing wrong.

When the gentle voice blamed my personality I thought, ‘damn being a doctor is easy.’

It’s so odd that it hurts so much. People who have it worse than me live fine, people who are weaker than me carry on fine. Maybe that’s not true. There’s no one alive that’s got it worse than me or is weaker than me.

But I should live on anyway.

I keep asking myself why I should hundreds of times and it’s not for my own good. It’s for yours.

Please don’t say a word if you don’t understand.

Find out why I’m hurting? I told you why. Is it so wrong to hurt so much because of that, do I need to have a more dramatic reason? A more specific reason?

I told you already. Were you not listening? Things you can overcome don’t scar you for life.

Clashing with the world was never meant for me.

The life of fame was never meant for me.

That’s all the reason why it hurts. Because I’m famous. Why did I choose this. It’s so funny.

It’s a wonder I lasted so long.

What can I say. Just tell me I’ve done well. That this is good enough. That I’ve worked hard. Even if you can’t smile don’t fault me on my way. You did well, you worked hard. Goodbye.

— SHINee’s Jonghyun

If you are suffering from depression, feeling suicidal or know someone who is — please contact the following organisations to seek help:

Befrienders Kuala Lumpur 03-7956 8144
Befrienders Penang 04-2815161
Befrienders Melaka 06-284 2500
Befrienders Ipoh 05-547 7933
Befrienders Seremban 06-765 3588
Lifeline Association of Malaysia 03-9285 0039, 03-9285 0279, 03-9285 0049
Malaysian Mental Health Association 03–7782 5499

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