It would have been impossible to translate Mr. Yoo’s book alone, and I was fortunate to have the help of many remarkable people. First and foremost among them was the author, Mr. Young-Bok Yoo, whose story of resilience and strength in the face of adversity continues to be an inspiration to me. Others to whom I owe a debt of gratitude include:
Mrs. Veronica Oak-Soon Park, the publisher, for giving me, a sixteenyear-old kid, the opportunity to translate the book.
Thomas Yong-Bong Chung, the head of the Korean War POW Affairs – USA in Los Angeles, for all of his encouragement and support.
I would like to add a special thank you to Mr. Yoo, Mrs. Park, and Mr. Chung, who agreed to use all of the proceeds from the book to support the POWs and their families.
David Alzofon, the editor, who took what was essentially an amateur’s first draft and made it a real book. He worked with an amazing attention to detail, and asked all of the difficult questions that made it possible for me to put together a book that an American audience could appreciate.
Frankie Frey, the book designer, for her great cover concept and for keeping her cool under considerable deadline pressure.
Also, I would like to thank my family:
My parents, for the infinite support they gave me during the eighteen months it took to finish the project. They spent countless hours helping me read and understand the book, and countless more reviewing my writing, making sure that the translation was accurate. I could not have done this without their help.
And most importantly, my grandmother, Soon-Ja Lee, for teaching me Korean. When I was much younger, she would—in spite of my protests—get me to read Korean books and study the language. It is truly thanks to her that I can speak and read Korean, even though I have never lived in Korea. I am now so grateful that she taught me.