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South Korea ferry disaster: Vice-principal saved from ferry found dead in apparent suicide

Published on Apr 18, 2014 4:44 PM
 

SEOUL (THE KOREA HERALD/ASIA NEWS NETWORK, AFP) - The vice-principal of Danwon High School who was rescued from the South Korea ferry was found dead in an apparent suicide on Friday, three days after hundreds of his students died or went missing in the maritime disaster.

Local police on Jindo island said the body of Mr Kang Min Kyu, 52, was found near the gymnasium where relatives of the 268 people still missing from the ferry disaster have been staying.

“The precise cause of death is still under investigation,” one police official told AFP.

Mr Kang apparently hanged himself on a tree on the hill.

Volunteers stand and wait in a designated support area at Danwon High School in Ansan on Friday, April 18, 2014, as a rescue operation continues for passengers, which include students from the school after a South Korea ferry capsized on April 16. The vice principal of Danwon High School was found dead in an apparent suicide on Friday, three days after hundreds of his students died or went missing in a ferry disaster. -- PHOTO: AFP

The police had searched for Mr Kang since Thursday.

"As the one in charge of the safety of the students, he was suffering from serious guilty feelings,” a teacher, who declined to be named, told the media. “Families of the victims vented their anger at him and he was brokenhearted.”

Of the 475 people on board the ferry when it capsized on Wednesday morning, 352 were students from Danwon High School in Ansan city just south of Seoul.

They were taking the ferry for a school excursion to the popular southern resort island of Jeju.

The vice principal was among 179 people who managed to escape the ferry in the few hours before it capsized and sank.

As of Friday afternoon, 28 of the 475 passengers were confirmed dead while 268 remained unaccounted for.

South Korea ferry sinking graphic

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