son of the famed film actor Audrey Hepburn
A memorial forest to victims of the Sewol ferry tragedy is being planted 4.16 km from Paengmok Port in Jindo, South Jeolla Province.
The social enterprise Tree Planet announced plans on Apr. 8 to plant a Sewol Memorial Forest in Jindo during the first half of 2015, with the help of Sean Hepburn Ferrer, son of the famed film actor Audrey Hepburn.
“In May 2014, we received an email from Sean telling us that he wanted to carry on his mother‘s legacy by doing something meaningful for the children were killed in the Sewol tragedy, that he wanted to plant a forest so that the children are always remembered,” the group explained.
Sean Ferrer is son of Hepburn and Mel Ferrer, also an actor. Previously a film director, he now chairs the Audrey Hepburn Children’s Fund, which performs charity efforts to honor his mother’s life.
The forest is to be planted in the Rose of Sharon Garden in Jindo. The distance of 4.16 km from Paengmok Port was selected to honor the victims in the tragedy, which occurred on April 16 last year. Current plans involve planting ginkgo trees that will turn golden in the fall - a choice reflecting the symbolic use of yellow to commemorate the victims.
Ferrer paid a portion of the costs for the forest, with the remainder to be covered through donations from the public (sewolforest.org).
The site itself was provided by the Jindo County Office, with Tree Planet paying the costs of maintenance. In the past, Tree Planet has used profits from a mobile tree-growing game to built forests in South Korea and elsewhere.
“We’ve been making preparations for a memorial space in the forest for nearly a year now, including visiting the 9/11 memorial park in New York,” said Jeong Min-cheol, one of the enterprise’s directors.
Tree Planet and Ferrer are planning a press conference at the Korea Press Center in Seoul on Apr. 9 to officially announce plans for the forest alongside a delegation from the group 4/16 Sewol Families for Truth and a Safer Society. From there, they plan to travel to Jindo on Apr. 10 for the ground-breaking.
By Kim Sung-hwan, staff reporter
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