The Washington PostThe Washington Post

South Korea confronts the trauma of the Halloween crowd crush

By Michelle Ye Hee Lee, Bryan Pietsch and Kelly Kasulis Cho

31 Oct 2022 · 6 min read

Editor's Note

South Korea is just starting to come to terms with the tragedy that unfolded in Itaewon on Saturday night. The fact that mental illness isn't widely discussed in the country may hinder the process.

Seoul - As the names of those killed in Saturday's crowd crush in Itaewon trickle out and residents pay their respects at mourning altars dedicated to the victims, South Korea's collective trauma is only just beginning.

The soaring death tolls. Social media images and videos of the chaos and suffering. Endless news coverage. Thousands of witnesses and emergency personnel, and countless more who have heard their accounts and grieved with them. South Korean residents are reeling from the horror that unfolded Saturday night, which killed at least 154 and injured 149 more.

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