In Memory of Choi Sulli
It’s hard to believe that the former f(x) beloved maknae Sulli has left the world since 2019. Choi Jin-ri or better known as Sulli was found dead at a young age in an apartment in Seongnam City, South Korea, on Monday, October 14, 2019. Sulli was born on March 29, 1994, and made her debut as a child artist before joining SM Entertainment’s girl group f(x). Upon resigning from f(x) on August 7, 2015, she returned as a full-time actress and even made her debut as a solo singer.
Although her body has left this world, her memory and legacy still stay with us. So, to honor her, we have compiled a full report on her death. Check out this article below to find out all about it!
Sulli’s Death in Her Apartment and Cause of Death
The world came to a halt when the news about Sulli’s death reached the public on Monday, October 14, 2019. This news was first reported by Naver which said that Sulli was found dead in her apartment in Seongnam, Gyeonggi Province, Seoul.
The 25-year-old singer was first found dead by her manager at around 15:21 KST. Her manager then reported to the Seongnam police on Sunday, October 13, 2020. Prior to the report, Sulli couldn’t be contacted since the day before. Her manager was worried about her whereabouts and decided to try to visit Sulli’s apartment.
After that, the police investigated to determine the cause of her death on the assumption that she may have taken her own life.
“It is true that Sulli has passed away. By the time we arrived, Sulli was already in a state of cardiac arrest,” the police stated.
According to the report, Sulli was found hanging on the 2nd floor of her apartment. After conducting an investigation, the police said there was no suspicion of murder.
However, the police said that they also couldn’t find a suicide note, “Choi seems to be living alone at home. It is possible that she committed suicide, but we are also looking for other possibilities,” said the police.
After the report of her death, Sulli’s name became the #1 trending topic on Twitter. Many people then connected Sulli’s suicide with the hate comments that were often directed toward her. Many said that Sulli was a victim of cyberbullying and internet trolls, and thus, it affected her mental health state.
— CAN¹²⁷ (@Deryheart) October 14, 2019
On top of that, Sulli recently appeared on the JTBC TV program Night of Hate Comments where celebrities talk about hate comments online. Sulli had faced many criticisms for her boldness and carefree character in her social media posts.
In her last appearance on Night of Hate Comments, Sulli admitted that her life is not as happy as is shown. She said that she was living in the dark.
“The real person, Choi Jin-ri (Sulli’s real name), has a darker side, while celebrity Sulli has to act like she’s cheerful. I ask a lot of advice from people around me because I feel like I’m lying to people,” Sulli said on her last appearance.
Sulli also answered one of the comments by saying she was not a bad person. She even asked the commenter to name one thing that made her deserving of the hate comments.
The day before the news of her death broke, Sulli still gave a usual update on Instagram.
Through her personal account, Sulli uploaded a video to thank the brand STRETCH ANGELS for sending her a box containing bags.
“I just received a confession,” wrote Sulli.
No wonder this news was so shocking since she left no clues prior to her death.
Official Statement from SM Entertainment
When the news of Sulli’s death broke, a source from SM Entertainment said that they still have to confirm it.
“We also heard the news and the news, we hope this is not true. This really makes us confused because we cannot contact [the agency],” a source said.
After the news was confirmed, SM Entertainment then released an official statement as shown below:
This is SM Entertainment.
We are sorry to tell everyone the sorrowful and sad news. Sulli has left us.
We cannot believe the situation, and we are simply in a state of grief.
Please refrain from spreading speculative articles or rumors in respect of the bereaved’s family who are saddened by the sudden tragedy. We express our deepest condolences to the deceased, who went on their final path.
— SM Entertainment
The agency asked the fans to stop spreading unfounded rumors to respect Sulli’s family.
Sulli’s Private Funeral
At the request of her family, Sulli’s funeral was held privately. The family even asked the media not to cover friends and coworkers who came to Sulli’s funeral.
However, SM Entertainment still allowed fans to express their grief and say goodbye to Sulli in special places.
“Based on the family’s thoughts, we have prepared a space to say goodbye to fans who always give [Sulli] support,” said SM’s statement on their official social media account.
The place for fans to mourn over Sulli was located in the Hall of the Yonsei Funeral Home on October 17, 2019. For the family, the ceremony was being held at a hospital in Seoul. However, the location and exact time of the funeral was not disclosed to the public.
Sulli’s funeral was also attended by her closest friends, including her former groupmates in f(x). Victoria and Amber, who were abroad at the time of Sulli’s death, immediately returned to Seoul to say their final farewell.
Previously, Amber was in the United States. But, upon Sulli’s death news, she immediately canceled all her schedules. She was seen arriving in Korea wearing all black clothes.
Likewise, Victoria also stopped filming in China and flew straight to Korea after getting a visa from Beijing. She was also seen in a black suit when she arrived in Korea.
Meanwhile, Krystal stayed in Sulli’s funeral home for 3 days straight. Though, she didn’t say anything on social media and thus received malicious comments from netizens for lack of sympathy.
“Upon hearing the news of Sulli’s [passing], Krystal was at the funeral home for 3 days, and she was involved in all the necessary procedures. For her to hear all the malicious comments right now is just too harsh,” a source revealed.
Seeing that f(x) was just officially disbanded a few months ago, many fans expressed that they still hoped for a reunion in the future. Sadly, this was not the kind of reunion that they expected.
the saddest F(x) reunion ever … 10th anniversary so sad … and please people don't ask about 'where is Krystal' give her some time … Sulli was the closest with Krystal, they where basically sisters … it hurts her the most
— BTS⁷ TWICE (@nay3r1) October 16, 2019
Celebrities Mourning Over Sulli
Due to Sulli’s death, many artists pushed back their promotional schedules as a sign of respect.
Sulli’s label-mate Super Junior pushed back the release of the “Super Clap” MV from their latest album Time_Slip. This video was supposed to be released on October 14th at 6 pm local time but was later pushed back to midnight on October 17th. Amber also temporarily halted promotions.
A number of celebrities also posted photos to commemorate Sulli’s death.
Shortly after attending the funeral, Victoria uploaded a photo featuring herself with Sulli and the other f(x) members.
“Sulli ~ Today’s weather is good. Goodbye. I’ll never forget you. I love you,” wrote Victoria.
Actress Goo Hye-sun and singer DinDin also showcased their condolences on their respective social media accounts. DinDin posted a black picture with the caption, “I pray that you will always be happy over there. My heart aches. RIP.” while Goo Hye-sun wrote, “Baby Sulli, sleep well. I love you.”
One of the bravest and brightest. Rest In Peace.
— JIMINxJAMIE (@jiminpark07) October 14, 2019
Other artists also tweeted about Sulli.
Thats fkin upsetting.
my deepest condolences to all of her loved ones.
— ᴄᴏʀʙʏɴ (@corbyn_28lab) October 14, 2019
삼가 고인의 명복을 빕니다.
— shin soo hyun (@shin_soohyun89) October 14, 2019
삼가 고인의 명복을 빕니다.
— 제리케이 | JERRY.K (@JerrykMusic) October 14, 2019
On the same day as Sulli’s funeral, Nam Tae-hyun, as one of Sulli’s closest friends, also talked about the hate speech he often received. He hoped that no more friends or people around him would have to end their lives because of hate speech.
“Like all of you, work as a ‘celebrity’ is also done by humans. I’m also a celebrity who gets a lot of hate speech, so this really affected me,” wrote Nam Tae-hyun on his social media.
“(Sulli), my friend, she must be hurt a lot. There were times when I also tried to end my life because I felt no longer strong. Many celebrities who feel hurt, become influenced by comments that may be written without thinking first,” he continued.
In the end, he asked the public to stop writing malicious comments on the Internet whether about celebrities or the people around them.
“I hope you all stop. I do not want to lose friends or colleagues again,” closed Nam Tae-hyun.
However, after that, he deleted the post.
The late Goo Hara, Sulli’s other closest friend, also left a heartbreaking message for Sulli. In a streaming broadcast, she said that she was sorry because she couldn’t say goodbye to Sulli.
“Sulli, I’m sorry I can’t go [to your funeral] because I am in Japan,” she said and then added, “I’m sorry that I had no other choice but to greet you like this. Live well up there and do everything that you wanted to do. I will live hard and work hard for you.”
She closed the stream by saying that she and Sulli were as close as sisters. Unfortunately, Goo Hara was later found dead within the same year as she also took her own life.
The Legacy of Sully: Sully Law
The death of Sulli sparked a conversation about mental health among K-pop idols, particularly about the cyberbullying that they have to endure. Many people then started to demand Parliament to pass a bill to tackle and end hate comments.
After Sulli’s death, a regulation under the name Sulli Law was passed by nine members of the National Assembly and is supported by 100 organizations and 200 celebrities who have received hate comments. The proposed law was then discussed in December 2019, which is 49 days after Sulli’s death.
Unfortunately, up to this day, Sulli Law has still not passed Parliament. The reason is because of the decreasing interest of the people who supported the bill.
According to EDaily, Sulli Law did not make it through the National Assembly in 2019.
“In order for the Sulli Law to be realized, someone must submit it again to the 21st National Assembly and pass to the main session. It’s just that currently no National Assembly member has submitted it again and interest in the Sulli Law has also decreased,” a source said.
This is unfortunate news since the number of hate comments is still on the rise despite many K-pop idols falling victim to the bullying.
“Evil netizens are not reduced. Only the comments are not visible,” said one insider in the South Korean entertainment industry.
We are saddened to lose the wonderful souls of Sulli and other K-pop idols who fell victim to hate comments and depression. If you ever find yourself in the same situation as her, don’t hesitate to reach out and ask for professional help. You matter and you are loved.
Let’s kindly show support to each other in the comment section below!