Yeonmi Park had the struggle of a lifetime in order to find peace and freedom, something Americans take for granted. She and her mother were from North Korea, and the conditions and persecution were so bad that on March 31, 2007, they crossed the frozen Talu River into China to what they thought would be a better life. But they were mistaken.
Yeonmi was only 13 years old when they left, and during the next years, they would travel across China to the Mongolian border. Her lifestyle was outside of the law and she was subjected to continual abuse, periods of starvation and thoughts of suicide while she was in China. When Park finally reached South Korea and freedom, she said that she never knew there was so much food available; she had never seen it before.
Yeonmi captivity in China began with being raped, and she being sexually abused across China is part of her story. She says that she is reporting and telling her story because she wants to express to the rest of the world the extreme oppression and political persecution that ten’s of thousands of refugees and citizens of North Korea endure every day. Yeomni Park is a voice on Daily Mail that shares the inhuman captivity that is endured in the extreme Communist country, but there are thousands of other refugees that also share the pain and turmoil.
Yeomni Park lost both her parents in the transition to South Korea, and she spent several years recovering from the traumatic events that occurred as she traveled through China. She protects her family that is still living in North Korea when she speaks, but she is referred to as a celebrity defector. The name doesn’t bother her because she tells her story to the media to reveal what she lived through to finally reach freedom.