April 26, 2011
Helpful Korean Kim Tae-Hwan
By Geoffrey Johnson
I wanted to talk to you about a Korean kid named Tae-Hwan Kim, who helped a poor boy stay in school. Tae-Hwan used newspapers to save the poor boy! Here is the story:
One day, Tae-Hwan was sitting next to the poor boy when he noticed that the kid had no lunch. He was just sitting there, trying to smile.
“You ate your lunch already?” Tae-Hwan asked. Lunch had just started!
“No,” the boy said slightly, “I don’t have one.”
That evening, Tae-Hwan and his friends gathered at his house. They were forming Unit A of an organization that did what they could to help kids in their community.
“I met a poor kid at school today. Sometimes he doesn’t have enough money to buy lunch,” Tae Hwan said.
The unit leader asked, “So, what are we going to do about that?”
“Ooo, Ooo! I know, I know!” his friend Kostas shouted as he raised his hand high in the air.
“Yes?” the leader asked, annoyed.
“We buy newspapers and sell them in the streets of Seoul!” Kostas said.
“Then, we gather up our earnings and pay the boy’s expenses!” His friend Gifford piped up.
Turning to Tae-Hwan, he added, “By the way, what is the poor boy’s name?”
“I don’t know,” Tae-Hwan replied.
The leader said, “Well, it’s settled then!”
Later in the evening, the assembly leader, Herter, divided the organization into Unit A and B. Unit A composed of Tae-Hwan, Gifford, Kostas, and Ty-Huber. Unit B was made of other residents of the assembly.
‘Well, he is a growing boy,’ his mother thought.
Therefore, his mother packed him an extra lunch. Then, at lunch, Tae-Hwan strolled over to the poor boy and sat down next to him.
“Here,” said Tae-Hwan as he handed him the extra lunch.
“What is it?”
“A lunch. It is for you,” said Tae-Hwan.
“A lunch? I don’t need one,” the boy scoffed.
Tae-Hwan stared him in the eye. It never fails. You go try it at home.
“Okay, I need a lunch,” the boy said.
The boy grabbed the lunch and started eating.
Later that afternoon, Unit A started to work. They went to a newspaper shop and bought newspapers with the money they had. Then, as Kostas had said, they sold them in the streets of Seoul. After that, as Gifford had said, they gathered up their money and waited.
Dr. Kim arrived at home as a tired man. When he got to the bed the phone rang……..
Finally, Dr. Kim picked it up. It was his business partner.
“Hey, Dr. Kim! I have something to tell you,” he said.
“Yes, what is it?”Dr. Kim replied.
“Are you having any trouble with money?”
“No, Why?” the doctor said.
“Because today I saw your son, Tae-Hwan, outside selling newspapers,” the business partner said.
“Hmmm, Well, Bye! I’ll have a word with Tae-Hwan,” Dr. Kim said.
Dr. Kim walked to Tae-Hwan’s room and opened the door. Tae-Hwan was reading a book.
“Selling Newspapers?” Dr. Kim said.
Tae-Hwan jumped. “How did you know?” he said.
“Why are you selling them?” said Dr. Kim.
“There is a poor boy at school,” Tae-Hwan said, “We sold newspapers to get money to give to the boy.”
The EndBy Geoffrey age 8
NOTE: This story was changed a lot so it’s more interesting, but Tae-Hwan did sell newspapers to help a poor boy stay in school. Dr. Kim did receive that phone call.
BIBLIOGRAPHY: Dad told me this story.
MORALE: You can do hard things to help other people and you can go through hard times for you and others.
(Note from Melanie—you can also find this story in a talk that was given by Elder Victor L. Brown printed in the March 1985 New Era called, “Do it. Be Ye Doers of the Word” and in an article in June 1979 New Era called, “Profiting for Others.”
And, Scott knows this story because he met Kim Tae-Hwan when he was serving on a mission in Korea. He and Tae-Hwan served together. Scott read the stories in the New Era magazines when they first were published and was happy that the story was published to inspire others. Scott said Tae-Hwan was an excellent missionary.)