Anchor: Memorial services took place in Seoul on Friday for Lee Hee-ho, the widow of former President Kim Dae-jung and a lifelong women’s and children’s rights activist. Amidst an outpouring of support for the late first lady since her death on Monday at the age of 97, thousands gathered to remember her legacy.
Our Arius Derr has more.
Report: A memorial ceremony for former first lady Lee Hee-ho, a first-generation women's rights activist and ardent believer in inter-Korean peace, was held Friday morning at Seoul National Cemetery.
Some two-thousand people attended, including Prime Minister Lee Nak-yon, lawmakers, civic leaders and members of the general public.
Speaking at a funeral service for the former first lady earlier in the morning at Changchun Methodist Church in Seoul, which she had attended since 1960, Prime Minister Lee urged the Korean people to honor the former first lady’s dying wish of love for one another and universal harmony.
The prime minister quoted the former first lady's will, which says she would pray in heaven for all Koreans, as well as for the peaceful unification of the Korean Peninsula.
He brought up Lee's commitment to women’s rights, and said her dreams have been realized through various policies introduced during her husband's presidency.
The prime minister also noted Lee's efforts to enhance democracy and improve inter-Korean relations.
Lee Hee-ho, who passed away on Monday at the age of 97, was an ardent supporter of her husband's political career. Enduring persecution and hardship during South Korea’s military dictatorship in the 1980s, Kim Dae-jung ultimately became president in 1998 following Korea’s democratization.
In her capacity as first lady, she played a significant role in expanding women’s and children's rights and aided her husband’s inter-Korean diplomatic efforts.
Lee devoted the last years of her life to promoting the legacy of her husband. She was laid to rest next to him at Seoul National Cemetery on Friday.
Arius Derr, KBS World Radio News.