The Korea Herald


Former President Kim Young-sam's widow dies

By Yonhap

Published : March 7, 2024 - 19:07

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Son Myung-soon, wife of late former President Kim Young-sam (Yonhap) Son Myung-soon, wife of late former President Kim Young-sam (Yonhap)

Son Myung-soon, the widow of former President Kim Young-sam, died Thursday at the age of 96, medical sources said.

The ex-first lady died of a chronic ailment late in the afternoon while under treatment at Seoul National University Hospital, according to the sources.

Son was a widow to Kim, who served as South Korea's 14th president from 1993-1998. Kim died at the age of 88 in 2015.

Son was married to Kim in 1951 and was known to have assisted her husband as the supportive wife of the long-time opposition politician.

Kim is an iconic political figure for South Korea's pro-democracy movement as his election to the presidency formally ended decades of military rule in South Korea. His two general-turned predecessors, Chun Doo-hwan and Roh Tae-woo, were indicted on mutiny and treason charges stemming from a military coup.

Under the Kim administration, South Korea received a massive international bailout during the 1997-98 Asian financial crisis.

President Yoon Suk Yeol expressed condolences over Son's death, calling her a "political partner" of former President Kim.

"All of the people will remember Son's life beautifully and with gratitude," Yoon said.

The late president and the first lady are survived by their two sons and three daughters.