South Korean Cyclists Ride Through Warsaw

Three South Korean friends made a stop in Warsaw Friday afternoon during their 3,400-mile bicycle journey from Los Angeles to New York.

Taewoo Kim, 23; Hyungu Kim, 24; and Hankyul Kim, 24, are biking to raise awareness about Comfort Women.
Comfort Women were women and girls forced into sexual slavery during World War II.  “We are raising awareness about justice for sexual brutality because the Japanese government is denying their responsibility in this,” Taewoo said.

Hankyul said the Japanese government should apologizing to the victims. Hyungu said it is a human rights issue that needs to be discussed. Last year there were two men from South Korea who did the bicycle journey from L.A. to New York to raise awareness about Comfort Women.

Taewoo said he has enjoyed telling people about Comfort Women. They will arrive in New York on Sept. 9 and fly back to South Korea. The three men had lunch at the Detroit Street Subway Friday afternoon and stayed at Deluxe Inn, Warsaw, that night.

The men’s bicycles were donated by Trek, and their universities financially sponsored them. Rudy Project, a bicycle company, game them helmets, sunglasses and bike equipment for free.

Taewoo and Hankyul study physical education at Kyunghee University, and Hyungu studies information and communication engineering at Hansung University. 

Hyungu said he has enjoyed seeing the desert in Arizona for the first time and meeting a cyclist who was traveling from Chicago to L.A. to raise funds for heart disease.

He said they biked in temperatures as high as 120 in L.A. and Arizona. They travel with food, water and bike tools. So far, they have had 20 flat tires so far and broken 10 bicycle spokes.

Hankyul has enjoyed meeting people they have stayed with using a Website called Warm Showers.  To follow the friends’ journey, visit Bike For Comfort Women on Facebook.