|▲ Sadly, Park Young-seok’s now gone, but his challenging spirit remains with us.|
Dongguk alumni were shocked upon hearing the news that contact was cut off with Park but firmly believed he would be located soon. However, as rescue teams dispatched from Korea failed to find any trace of him, memorial altars at Jeonggakwon and Central Library were set up where Park’s copper plate has been engraved.
Park Young-seok graduated from the Physical Education Dept. in 1991 and is a Professor of the Graduate School of Education. When he was a university student, Park was a member of the Dongguk Mountaineering Club. He decided to become a great mountaineer at this time while enjoying his club activities. He endured heavy training, which helped him achieve peak physical limitations. He always enjoyed taking on challenges and concentrated on his chosen goal. Members of the Dongguk Mountaineering Club still recall the memory of their colleague Park Young-seok.
Park climbed Mount Everest in 1993 without a respirator and declared that he would climb the 13 other 8,000-meter peaks in the shortest amount of time ever. He achieved this goal and the Adventure Grand Slam in 2005, which includes the summits of the Seven Highest Mountains of each continent.
It was just a year ago when mountaineer Park Young-seok led expeditions to set another goal of a “Korean Route” in the Himalayas. His attempt sought to establish the “Korean route” on the southern slopes of Lhotse, which is known for its very steep incline. Park had already climbed Lhotse in 2001 but tried to find a new route on the 8,090-meter-high mountain.
At his send off ceremony of the dead, hundreds of students gathered at the Central Library to remember him and his contributions to climbing and Dongguk.
Sadly he is gone now but his challenging spirit remains with us. He taught us about the greatness of taking challenges and the beauty of maintaining our goals. Alumni Park Young-seok would have loved and looked forward to seeing our young climbers reach the highest peaks in their lives. The challenge yet awaits.
Lee Jong-seok firstname.lastname@example.org
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