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17-year-old Hong Won Ki with “progeria”: “I hope I can still be healthy even when I’m 20”

Hong Won Ki shared his simple wish.

The MBN entertainment program “Passionate Goodbye,” which aired on Nov 7th, featured the story of Hong Won Ki, who was diagnosed with “progeria” at the age of 5, and his family.

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Hong Sung Won, his father, said Hong Won Ki suffers from progeria, a rare disease in which a person’s aging is seven times faster than a normal person, leading to a rapid aging process of the patient’s blood vessels. The average life expectancy of this disease’s patients is in their mid-teens.

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Hong Won Ki, who has turned 17 years old, is working hard with the goal of celebrating his 20th birthday in good health.

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Yu Jin said, “It’s better to see you in person than only on YouTube. I was curious after watching you on TV when you were a baby. I looked you up after I heard that you were doing YouTube. Nice to meet you. It was so cute to see 4-year-old Won Ki wanting a car seat with his chubby cheeks. Won Ki is very multi-talented as he can sing, play musical instruments, dance, and cook.”

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Hong Won Ki put his hat in the Hi-bye box.

Hong Won Ki, who has always been with his hat since he was 17 years old to protect his scalp, said, “I don’t have hair, so I always wear a hat and have a lot of those at home. I want to be comfortable even without a hat when I grow older,” he said, explaining why he wants to say goodbye to the hat. Hong Won Ki told the production team, “I have a lot of hats at home. The hat is like a living thing to me. I feel like I’m always protected and accompanied by it since I was young.”

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His mother said Hong Won Ki was diagnosed with progeria when he was only five years old, adding, “They said he could only live until he was ten years old. I cried a lot.” His father added, “I keep thinking about that day. It was raining like in the movies. Won Ki’s mother hugged him like this without saying anything and put him to sleep,” he recalled.

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Mrs. Hong said, “When he was born, he looked just like any other child. The symptoms started to develop when he was one year old. I thought it would get better with time, but he was diagnosed with that syndrome when he was five. The thing I think the most about when raising Won Ki is, ‘I hope he had fun today, I’m fine as long as he lived another day.'” His father confessed, “How long will Won Ki stay with us? Maybe it’s only until today, that’s our biggest fear.”

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Mrs. Hong said, “I hope the day we say goodbye to Won Ki will be happy. I hope it will not be a sad funeral, but a funeral where people can be comforted that he has enjoyed and lived his life well together with everyone. We discuss this a lot. We have decided that Won Ki’s funeral will not be held at the hospital. I have a dream of having a funeral where we can turn on the music that Won Ki likes and cry together, a funeral where we talk about the life Won Ki has lived,” she shared, making Yu Jin and Hwang Je Seong’s hearts heavy.

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The Hong Won Ki family then grilled pork belly with the cast members. Hong Won Ki said, “The best day to me is just to eat or go on a trip with my family. It’s like hanging out with my friends or something like that. Today was the best day ever. It was fun,” he said with a smile.

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Hong Won Ki cited independence as something he wants to do when he becomes an adult. He said, “I want to do something alone. I want to do the laundry, and make food for myself,” he mentioned.

After that, Hong Won Ki read the messages cheering for him from his fans. Hong Won Ki then cried as he blew out the candles on the cake celebrating his 20th birthday in advance.

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He also left a video message for the 20-year-old Won Ki. Hong Won Ki said, “I’m 17 years old and I’ll be you in three years. Since you’ve become an adult, I hope you can live harder and be healthy and bright at the age of 20. I hope you can continue to do YouTube and connect with good people to become a good person. I hope you can be healthy even at the age of 20.”

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Hong Won Ki said goodbye to his hat and left the studio.

Source: nate

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