Update, Halloween Tragedy Incident in Itaewon

Janet Luna Rosales and Rosa Morales

Days after more than 150 Halloween revelers died in South Korea’s deadliest crowd surge, a quiet but wrenching reminder of the disaster remained Tuesday: Hundreds of abandoned shoes have been laid out in neat rows in a badminton court in the capital, Seoul.

Police have assembled the crumpled tennis shoes, loafers and Chuck Taylors — part of 1.5 tons of personal objects left by victims and survivors of the tragedy — in hopes that the owners, or their friends and family, will retrieve them.

Seoul crowd crush death toll rises to 156 : National : News : The Hankyoreh

Most of the victims were women and many of them were missing shoes, which experts say reflects the force of a crowd surge that stripped footwear from their feet in the crush.

Some 250 pairs of shoes at the gym are part of a huge collection of abandoned items found in Itaewon following the tragedy. There are also hundreds of pieces of clothing, including coats and movie character costumes, as well as handbags, smartphones, Bluetooth earpieces and a few passports, including at least one belonging to a U.S. citizen.

Yongsan police officials, who will keep the gym open until Sunday, didn’t immediately confirm how many of the items have been returned to their owners.

Some victims were:

Lee Ji Han, 24

Grace Rached, 23

Steven Blesi, 20

Choi Boseong, 24

Anne Gieske, 20

Dinn Thi Tuyen, 21

Tomikawa Mei, 26

Shin Ae-Jin, 24