Meet American-Korean Soloist, Samuel Kim
Samuel Kim, or Kim Samuel Arredondo (김사무엘), was born on January 17, 2002. His father is Mexican-American and his mom is Korean, which is why he doesn’t seem like a typical Korean. He was born and lived in Los Angeles, California for 11 years and moved to South Korea with his mom to pursue his dream to debut as a singer. He became famous because he was a contestant on Produce 101 season 2 but, unfortunately, he didn’t place in the top 11 and couldn’t debut with Wanna One. He debuted as soloist in 2017, but his first appearance on television was on Seventeen TV (2013). He was a trainee under Pledis Entertainment, Seventeen’s agency, but he left the agency in 2013 because his mom didn’t want him to debut at such a young age (11 years old). On his debut stage he performed his song “With You”, featuring Chung Ha, another contestant from Produce 101 season 1.
Who is Samuel Kim’s Father ?
Samuel’s father is Jose Arredondo. He lives in the USA, while Samuel went to South Korea to be a K-Pop idol. He works at a car dealership in Bakersfield, California, and Samuel used to act for his father’s car dealership commercials. Jose is the 4th of 11 children and was born poor. He was born in Mexico and moved to the USA when he was 12 with half of his family members, hoping to find work even though his English wasn’t very good. His first job was in 1977, washing cars at a Mission Hills dealership to help his mother. When he was 17 he was making $325 every two weeks. His attitude was so upbeat that he was given the chance to sell cars on weekends. This was the golden ticket that started his successful life. He started his first month with selling 12 cars a month and made $4,000 dollars. Then he became the full-time salesman. Customers were willing to buy from him despite his poor English is because he was polite and truthful rather than pressuring them with sales pitches.
He saved his money and purchased various properties. He made improvements and then sold them. In 1990 he purchased an auto-body shop and a convenience store in Los Angeles. He stayed there for three years. In 1993 he heard about a car lot that was losing money at the Auto Mall in Bakersfield and decided to buy it. He started expanding his dealership group after that. Jose also owns a real estate agency (Family Realty), a golf range (Jose’s Golf Range & Pro Shop), plus a state-of-the-art auto body and paint shop (Family Motors Auto Body And Paint). Jose became successful because he’s a dealer who cares for people. To him, service, dedication,and honesty are not only words, they express his way of doing business. Jose likes to build customer relationships that last for life.
Father and Son Moments
Actually there aren’t many pictures or videos talking about Samuel and his father moments. On a variety show named Photo People, Samuel told people that he didn’t have many pictures with his Dad. He even cried during the show because he envied the kids who can pose and have fun with their dad. As we know, Samuel left America at a young age for South Korea so he didn’t see his father frequently. The only video that captures him and his dad is a commercial for his dad’s car dealership from when he was 9 years old. Check it out here.
Reportedly Murdered in Mexico
Last month is one of the terrible time for Samuel. After already having conflict with his agency, Brave Entertainment, he received shocking news on Tuesday, July 16. Samuel even disabled his social media accounts on Wednesday (July 17) after he heard the news. His dad was found beaten to death at his house in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. His dad’s body tshowed signs of blunt force trauma, according to prosecutors Baja California Sur. People close to him have said he also suffered stab wounds. According to the local outlet Tribunal de Los Cabos, Arredondo was found “laying on the floor with several wounds caused by a knife in the back.” Authorities are calling the incident a home invasion. The U.S government closely monitored this case to find out who killed Jose.
On July 30, Samuel posted on Instagram, sharing a message to his dad as a farewell and giving late birthday congratulations. In the caption he wrote, “Happy birthday dad. Always inside my heart. You are a legend to me. I’ll be like you in the future. I miss you so much. Love you so much dad. #restinpeace #JoseArrendondo“. Jose died a day before he turned 61.
Police finally arrested a suspect. He is his dad’s longtime friend and golfing buddy. The man was identified as 50-year-old Roberto “N”, originally from Mexico’s Hidalgo state. “They were friends for quite some time,” Bakersfield lawyer David Torres said in a phone interview. “From time to time they were golfing buddies as well.”. The man is charged with homicide in Mexico. Baja California Sur authorities believe Roberto allegedly committed the crime in the company of others. Jose’s family stated that they know who Roberto is and believe there are more suspects behind Jose’s death. Jose’s sister stated, “That particular person was a friend of his for 20 years. They have one of them, but it wasn’t just one [person involved], it was more. But at least they have one of them and I know that person is going to talk.”
Fans and Public Support For Samuel Kim
So many K-Pop fans were shocked by this news. They felt the news was really heartbreaking for both fans and Samuel himself. Garnets (Samuel’s fandom name) sendt their condolence and left so many heart warming message for him. They showed their support by leaving encouraging words in his social media, website, or YouTube videos that talked about the event. Garnets made a hashtag for Samuel, #StayStrongSamuel, to give him support, hoping it would help him feel a little bit better to know that so many people care for him. Garnets say that they will always be there for Samuel and support him no matter what. Other people, who aren’t his fans, also urge him to “stay strong”.
Seeing him like this broke down next to his father’s coffin I don’t know but Samuel deserves so much more than now he is just a child literally just a 17 boy why does he have to go through all of this #STAYSTRONGSAMUEL pic.twitter.com/ASDvPDvb0U
— CHAERYEONG STOLE CHAEYEON’S BRAINCELLS (@chaesisters1105) July 28, 2019
chungha supported samuel during his debut promotions and he was like a little brother to her, this talented boy is going through a hard moment right now, we love you samuelito #StayStrongSamuel pic.twitter.com/TqWe59JtAp
— chungha fancams ☾✩ (@kchunghafancams) July 17, 2019
My heart is just breaking at this news, no one deserves to go through such grief at such a young age…my condolences go out to him and his family, I hope they can find peace #StayStrongSamuel #SamuelKim pic.twitter.com/tdmdjQMm41
— kate (@taeeberryy) July 18, 2019
No words can estinguish the flame of grief. But just know that your Garnets are here with and for you. As we always are. We love you Samuel, stay strong. #WeLoveYouSamuel #StayStrongSamuel pic.twitter.com/HsVfCxgTBh
— 성화의 fai (@emoateez) July 17, 2019
Samuel’s Latest News
Samuel finally posted again on his Instagram on August 2. He uploaded a tree picture and wrote a long message for Garnets for their love and support to him. He thanked the fans for encouraging him and congratulating his second-year anniversary. He also promised Garnets that he’ll come back soon with great music. The translation of his caption reads: “Hello, this is Kim Samuel. Thank you to everyone who congratulated me on the second anniversary of my debut and to Garnets. Although I’ve recently been going through a tough time both mentally and emotionally, Garnets’ love and support have given me courage and strength. So that I can become stronger in the future, I won’t lose sight of my initial mindset and attitude. I will work hard to grow and become like the tree in this photo, to have deeper thoughts and a more open-minded heart. I will repay the time Garnets spend waiting for me with great music. Once again, thank you for congratulating me on the second anniversary of my debut.”. Lastly he added hashtag #IWillBecomeStrong, and #ThankYou.
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안녕하세요 김사무엘 입니다. 저의 데뷔2주년을 축하해주신 여러분, 가넷여러분 감사합니다. 요새 재가 정신적으로 힘들고 마음적으로도 힘들었지만, 가넷여러분들의 응원과 사랑덕분에 용기와 힘이 생겼습니다. 앞으로 재가 더 강해질수있도록 마음가짐과 초심을 잃지않겠습니다. 이 사진속에 있는 나무처럼 마음도 넓어지고, 생각도 깊어지고, 성장할수있도록 노력하겠습니다. 가넷 여러분들의 기다림을 멋진 음악으로 보답해드리겠습니다. 다시한번더 저의 데뷔2주년 축하해주셔서 감사합니다. #강해지겠습니다 #감사합니다
— Lovemuel (@Lovemuel3) August 1, 2019
Samuel's Debut 2nd Anniversary. Congratulations My Cutie Pie. SPREAD LOVE FOR SAMUEL. Let's stay healthy and happy! #Samuel #kimsamuel #사무엘 #HAPPY_GARNET_DAY #2YearsWithSamuel #Samuel_2nd_Anniversary #Garnet #KimSamuel #Ksamuel #김사무엘 #가넷 #2years #Kpop #BTS #Blackpink pic.twitter.com/b8gebQrnfm
— 김사무엘KimSamuel (@KimSamuelll) August 2, 2019
We send deep condolences to Samuel and we hope he and his family can get through this tragedy soon. Also we want to congratulate him for his second-year anniversary. Stay strong and happy anniversary, Samuel!