The Story of Yeomi Park’s Escape to Freedom

Yeonmi Park was a brave North Korean defector that, in order to gain freedom and defeat her fear of hunger, escaped to China and South Korea. She wrote the Amazon released book In Order To Live: A North Korean Girl’s Journey to Freedom to tell us her story of how she journeyed to her road of freedom. Since she lived during the days of extensive violations of human rights by North Korean government, she had to endure a rough childhood and emotional torture.
Her story of freedom starts on March 3, 2007, when she was only thirteen years old. They soon realized that they would die if they had no food. Her sister decided she would flee first. Then in the middle of the night, she and her mother crossed the Yalu river and fled to China. Upon entering the country, they quickly realized it was a place of prostitution and sex slaves. Yeonmi cried everyday as a sex slave and finally, she and her mother was released. They decided it was time to go to South Korea.

In freezing temperatures, they crossed the Gobi Desert on foot. The only thing that they carried to protect them was knives and the only thing guiding them was the stars. Yeonmi and her mother finally reached their freedom by crossing the Mongolian border and boarding a plane to South Korea. Her father had tried to escape with them, but died from untreated cancer.

After living safely in South Korea, she finished high school and reunited with her sister two years later. Now she is a high-profile activist and made a speech on One Young World Summit in 2014, her speech video can be watched on YouTube. That was when she revealed to the world everywhere: her story, the nightmare-ish hell her family went through, and how she obtained freedom.

Before she started writing her book, she tried to block her brain from the horrific memories of the events that happened. As she started writing, she started to remember what had happened. She wrote on behalf on everyone’s story, including her mother, father, and sister. After she wrote her book, she felt all the pressure lifted. Her book captivated lots of people and displayed her strength of character that allowed her to survive her journey.

Reason.com article