Remembering Jonghyun: Fans Honor SHINee Singer on Anniversary of Death
The K-Pop star, who died Dec. 18, 2017 in his native Korea at age 27, is being celebrated on Twitter by his bandmates, label and fans. On Monday -- Tuesday in Korea -- tributes in the form of photos, videos and kind words began pouring in online.
SM Entertainment, the label that repped Jonghyun's band, SHINee, posted a video honoring his life. The nearly one minute video, set to somber music, featured photos of Jonghyun on and off stage. It's been retweeted more than 50,000 times and received thousands of replies.
"I smiled until the end but then I just burst into tears. I miss you so much, and I love you dearly. Your body may be gone, but your spirit is still with us. I can feel you on every song, even the new ones without your voice. Thank you for your poetry, thank you for your art," one fan wrote.
Another said, "Can't help but to cry. We miss you."
"We love & miss you so much. Beautiful King," a third Twitter user wrote.
SHINee also shared the video, on their Twitter account. They did not add a message of their own about the deceased singer, however.
Many fans shared personal tributes on social media, writing about how much Jonghyun, who died of a suspected suicide, meant to them. While each tribute was different, they all expressed the same sentiment -- Jonghyun is greatly missed by those who admired him.
"It's been a year. We miss you Jonghyun. Hope you're fine and you're happy and in peace where ever you are. Your music, memories, beautiful words, your life and smile still lives in a millions [SIC] of us. You did well. Rest in peace Kim Jonghyun," one fan wrote.
A memorial event was held to honor Jonghyun's life at the S.M. Town Coex Atrium in Gangnam, Korea. The K-Pop Herald reported that the event was something of an art fair, which showcased clips and writing dedicated to the musician. The theme of the night was "Stories you left us, stories we will fill." A memorial service also took place.
"It's definitely still difficult to think about him, although a year has passed since his death. I couldn't listen to his songs for a while," one fan who traveled from Canada to attend the memorial event said.
"I still remember the day of his death. I was working at an office, and I literally screamed at the news. I couldn't leave the office until 1am for being shocked."
Another fan from the Philippines said, "It still feels weird, as I've always remembered him being fine and positive. I hadn't expected his death. I listen to his songs whenever I feel stressed at my work."
The event was organized by Shiny, a nonprofit organization founded by Jonghyun's family after his death. The organization aims to benefit young artists.
Jonghyun, born Kim Jong-hyun, was found dead in a studio apartment he rented in Cheongdam-dong in southern Seoul on Dec. 18, 2017. He suffered a cardiac arrest and, upon being discovered, was taken to a nearby hospital where he was pronounced dead after several revival attempts failed.
He was the main vocalist of SHINee, known for his singing, songwriting and dancing. In addition to being part of the group, Jonghyun had a successful solo career. He was nominated for the best male artist award at the 2016 Mnet Asian Music Awards.