Before she died in a fiery car crash with a garbage truck, Gwi Rye Kim was “living the American dream,” according to her son, Jae Youl Jung.
Kim, 65, who lived on Chicago’s northwest side, died along with the two friends when their Kia SUV crashed into a Skokie garbage truck at Harlem Avenue and Harrison Street on Oct. 15.
“She was a wonderful person,” Jung said. “She was so full of life and everyone who knew her loved her.”
Head bowed, Jung spoke through an interpreter at a press conference announcing a wrongful death lawsuit against the village of Skokie Tuesday. The lawsuit alleges that the garbage truck driver was negligent in going too fast for conditions and not keeping a proper lookout.
The day Kim died, she was on her day off from the Chicago restaurant San Soo Gab Korean Barbecue, where she worked with Jung Ran Min, 51, who was also riding in the car. Min’s husband, Won Suk Lim, 56, was driving that day, according to attorneys representing Jung.
Kim immigrated to the United States in 2005, while he and his two siblings remained home in Korea, Jung said.
“She loved America and she loved living in Chicago, where she thought she was living the American dream,” he said.