Family member calls loss of pair in Highway 46 crash ‘difficult’

A memorial service for Hyun Kim, 49, and Richard Jung, 21, the mother and son from Shandon killed in a car wreck on Highway 46 on New Years Day, will be held at Paso Robles Korean Presbyterian Church today.

Richard Jung was a senior studying microbiology at UC Davis, where he also worked in a lab as a cancer vaccine research assistant. He spoke English, Korean and Spanish and attended Morro Bay High School, where he played football, said his brother, Daniel Jung, 23.

“I wish I could be like my brother,” Daniel Jung said. “My mom was selfless and made a lot of sacrifices. Everything she did was for my brother and I.”

Without speaking English, Hyun Kim came to the United States from Korea and started a business so she could provide a better life for her two sons, Daniel Jung said.

“Coping with this has been very difficult, but each day, we grieve less and remember the good times more,” Daniel Jung said. “This is not the best time of my life, but my family and I are doing the best we can.”

Mark Tognazzini, 55, of Morro Bay is a longtime friend of the Jung family, whom he met when Richard and Daniel were young boys.

As avid outdoorsmen, they often hunted together. He hired the brothers to work in his fishing and restaurant businesses, where they helped scrub the boat and sell fish.

Tognazzini said his Hispanic staff respected Richard Jung because he spoke Spanish well. “It is really sad when someone with so much potential is taken away,” Tognazzini said. “I guess that’s where faith comes in.”

Richard Jung and Hyun Kim were driving east on Highway 46 to Los Angeles to visit family when alleged drunken driver Herculano Hernandez, 23, of Delano — driving a 2000 Ford Contour — rear-ended their 2006 Honda Ridgeline, pushing it into the westbound lane.

The Honda then collided with a 2000 Chevrolet truck driven by Carl Logan, 71, of Bakersfield.

Logan also died as a result of the collision. His wife was initially treated at Twin Cities Community Hospital in Templeton, and was later in critical condition at Stanford University Medical Center, according to Bakersfield television station KGET.

Arrangements have been made for Richard Jung and Hyun Kim to be cremated at Kuehl-Nicolay Funerals and Cremations in Paso Robles.