Sunday, November 23, 2014   

Heartbreaking text messages from students on sinking ferry in SKorea
(04-17 15:44)

Heart-wrenching messages of fear, love and despair, sent by high school students from a sinking South Korean ferry added extra emotional weight Thursday to a tragedy that has stunned the entire nation.
Nearly 300 people -- most of them students on a high school trip to a holiday island -- are still missing after the ferry capsized and sank on Wednesday morning.
"Sending this in case I may not be able to say this again. Mom, I love you,'' one student Shin Young-Jin said in a text to his mother that was widely circulated in the South Korean media.
"Oh, I love you too son,'' texted back his mother who was unaware at the time that her son was caught in a life and death struggle to escape the rapidly sinking vessel.
Unlike many others, the exchange had a happy ending as Shin was one of only 179 survivors rescued before the ferry capsized and went under the water.
Others were not so fortunate.
Another student, 16-year-old Kim Woong-Ki sent a desperate text for help to his elder brother as the ship listed violently over to one side.
"My room is tilting about 45 degrees. My mobile is not working very well,'' Kim messaged.
Seeking to reassure him, his brother said he was sure help was on the way.
"So don't panic and just do whatever you're told to do. Then you'll be fine,'' he messaged back.
There was no further communication and Kim was listed among the 287 people on board still unaccounted for.
Sadly his brother's advice was similar to that of the crew who controversially ordered passengers to stay put when the ship first foundered.
Angry relatives said this resulted in the passengers getting trapped when the ferry keeled over, cutting off routes of escape.
That grim scenario was encapsulated in the texts of an 18-year-old student, identified in the local media by her surname Shin.
"Dad, don't worry. I'm wearing a life vest and am with other girls. We're inside the ship, still in the hallway,'' the girl messaged to her father.
Her distraught father texted her to try and get out, but it was already too late.
"Dad, I can't. The ship is too tilted. The hallway is crowded with so many people,'' she responded in a final message.
Some parents managed a last, traumatic phone call with their children as they tried to escape.
"She told me the ship was tilted over and she couldn't see anything,'' one mother recalled of a panicked conversation with her student daughter.
"She said 'I haven't put on the life jacket yet', and then the phone went dead,'' the mother told the Dong-A Ilbo newspaper. --AFP
Other World breaking news:
Inmates rampage in Greek prison hospital (11-21 19:17)
6.9-magnitude quake hits eastern Indonesia, no tsunami alert (11-21 19:00)
Sri Lanka minister defects to challenge president (11-21 18:21)
Luxury car collection including 4 Rolls-Royces goes up in flames in Moscow (11-21 18:17)
Germans face caning for vandalism in Singapore (11-21 17:52)
UN blasts Thai junta for 'Hunger Games' detentions (11-21 17:17)
Britain's anti-EU UKIP take second seat in blow for Cameron (11-21 17:03)
Japan lower house dissolved ahead of election (11-21 16:24)
Singapore moves to regulate taxi booking apps (11-21 15:50)
Clashes as Mexicans hold rally for 43 missing students (11-21 15:49)

More breaking news >>

© 2014 The Standard, The Standard Newspapers Publishing Ltd.
Contact Us | About Us | Newsfeeds | Subscriptions | Print Ad. | Online Ad. | Street Pts


Home | Top News | Local | Business | China | ViewPoint | CityTalk | World | Sports | People | Central Station | Spree | Features

The Standard

Trademark and Copyright Notice: Copyright 2014, The Standard Newspaper Publishing Ltd., and its related entities. All rights reserved.  Use in whole or part of this site's content is prohibited.   Use of this Web site assumes acceptance of the
Terms of Use, Privacy Policy Statement and Copyright Policy.  Please also read our Ethics Statement.