Thursday, October 21, 2004

A. Young Kim comforted and kissed her 1-month-old son, Apollo Ikaika Kim, after the casket of her husband, Pvt. Jeungjin "Nikky" Kim, was loaded into the hearse yesterday following his funeral at the Honolulu Central Seventh-day Adventist Church in Nuuanu. On the left is Jeungjin's mother, Mi Young Jang; behind A. Young is Jeungjin's father, Jeung Kyuu Kim; and on the far right is A. Young's mother, Myong Sun Watanabe. Jeungjin Kim was killed in Ar Ramadi, Iraq, on Oct. 6.

Family mourns GI
killed in Iraq

The governor offers condolences
before the Punchbowl burial

A. Young Kim and husband Pvt. Jeungjin "Nikky" Kim "were supposed to be together forever," she told mourners at his funeral.

"We still are going to be together forever, babe," she said. "I'm going to love you for the rest of my life."

Family members and friends gathered at the Honolulu Central Seventh-day Adventist Church in Nuuanu yesterday to honor and remember Jeungjin Kim, 23, who was killed Oct. 6 when his patrol was attacked by a homemade bomb and small arms fire in Ar Ramadi, Iraq.

Gov. Linda Lingle, Lt. Gov. James "Duke" Aiona and Maj. Gen. Robert Lee, state adjutant general, were among those who paid condolences.

A. Young Kim reached over her husband's casket during yesterday's funeral.

"We wanted to come today and offer our sympathy to the family and let them know how much we appreciated the courage of their son, grandson and husband and let them know we appreciated that he gave his life to protect our way of life here in Hawaii and in America," said Lingle. "This young man was an outstanding man who gave his life for our freedom."

Kim was a member of the 2nd Battalion, 17th Field Artillery, of the 2nd Infantry Division, based in South Korea. Lee presented a condolence message and a commanding-general coin to Kim's family.

During the service, A. Young Kim read a letter her husband wrote before he left for Iraq. "I need you to know the only way I can make it through this hard time is that you stay strong and be happy with our baby boy until I get back," he wrote.

Kim said her husband of three years was able to see their 1-month-old son through pictures she had sent to Iraq earlier.

Kim had described her husband as a warrior who was proud to be a soldier.

His best friend, Tae Kim, recalled memories of "drinking, talking story and laughing until we cried."

"He had a wicked laugh," he said. "We had a lot of memories."

Kim was awarded the Purple Heart, Bronze Star and good-conduct medal at a burial service held at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific at Punchbowl after he was honored with a 15-gun salute.

Kim is also survived by son Apollo Ikaika, mother Mi Young Jang and father Jeung Kyuu Kim.

Services for Spc. Kyle Ka'eo Fernandez of Pearl City will be held today and tomorrow at Borthwick Mortuary. Fernandez and Sgt. Brian Hobbs, who were both based at Schofield Barracks, were killed last Thursday when a homemade bomb struck their Humvee.

2nd Infantry Division


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