Thousands of people were packed so tightly into a narrow alley that fateful night that they could not move.
Some could not breathe and died standing.
Thousands of people, including victims’ families, survivors and activists, held a mass commemoration in Seoul on Sunday (Oct 29) to mark the first anniversary of the deadly crush.
A total of 158 people died during the incident last year, but the South Korean government revised the death toll to 159 following the death of 16-year-old Lee Jae Hyun, who survived that night but committed suicide over a month after.
He lost his girlfriend and friend in the tragedy.
Jae Hyun’s mother, Madam Song Hae Jin, told CNA that her son was a cheerful and talkative boy, but became quiet and withdrawn and had trouble sleeping after the incident.
One morning, he went out and never returned.
“Before he died, there were two times when he was really hurting and would cry and talk to me in frustration. He said it was difficult for him because he kept thinking about the events of that night and he couldn’t focus in the classroom,” said Mdm Song.