Se Won Kim, 93, of Guilford, died on Tuesday, June 18, 2019, at UHS Chenango Memorial Hospital.
Se Won was born in 1926 in Pyongyang, Korea. He went to Seoul in 1945 and joined the Korean Navy, which was the beginning of his long career in public service. He met his wife, In Soo, in 1947. Se Won was head of the Korean Naval Intelligence during the Korean War from 1951 to 1954. In 1961, on behalf of the Republic of Korea, he joined the Diplomatic Service and was posted to Honolulu as Consul General where he remained for eight years. Se Won was then assigned as Deputy Ambassador to Vietnam in December of 1969, where he served until 1973. He then served as Ambassador to Cambodia until 1975 when the Khmer Rouge seized control. After that assignment, Se Won was posted as Ambassador to Sweden until 1979. Next he took on the role of Vice Chairman of the South Korean Olympic Committee, where he oversaw efforts to bring the 1988 Games to Seoul, South Korea. Se Won retired after the Games to spend his winters in the Panhandle of Florida and summers in Upstate New York with his grandchildren.
Se Won is survived by his wife of 70 years, as well as his three children, five grandchildren, and several relatives in California. He will be remembered for his sharp wit and sense of humor, and his unwavering commitment to both his family and his country. He will be greatly missed.
A private celebration of Se Won’s life will be held at the convenience of the family.