Young Whan Kihl

Young Whan Kihl

October 13, 1932 - December 14, 2014

Young Whan Kihl

October 13, 1932 - December 14, 2014


Professor Young W. Kihl, age 82, of Laguna Woods, California, passed away at Orangegrove Rehabilitation Hospital on December 14, 2014.

Young Whan Kihl was born in Korea on October 13, 1932. He graduated from Young San High School in Seoul, Korea. After migrating to the United States and becoming a US citizen, he received a BA in Political Science and Economics from Grinnell College and a Ph.D. in International Politics and Organizations, Comparative Politics (Asia) and Political Behavior from New York University.

Professor Kihl was passionate about political science. He specialized in North South Korean relations and wrote many well-respected books on the topic.

Professor Kihl was predeceased by his beloved wife Mary in 2007. He is survived by his children, Ann and Christopher, and his sisters Young Won Ha and Young Yun Lee.

A memorial service will be held at O’Connor Mortuary, 25301 Alicia Pkwy, Laguna Hills, CA 92653 on Monday, December 22 at 1:00 P.M.

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12 responses to Young Whan Kihl

  1. Victor Cha says:

    Dr. Kihl was a tremendous scholar. I read his work as a graduate student. I taught from his books as a professor. And I was so honored to host him as a visiting senior scholar at my university after he left Iowa. I last saw him in L.A. when he attended a conference at USC. The man never tired of his profession — in fact, he left the conference early because he had to return to give a lecture to folks at a local community center about Korea! I will miss him. Victor Cha

  2. What a very interesting life Dr. Kihl led. He started the Korean language and social studies class for Laguna Woods Village, CA residents, and that legacy is continuing. RIP, Professor. It was nice knowing you.

    -Linda Betty Blakeney (Laguna Woods)

  3. I was very fortunate to know Young on a personal level. He was a brilliant person and always made me feel welcome when I spent time with him and his family. Mary and Young inspired me to further my education. I have fond memories of Chip and I think about Ann often. Thought and prayers to you both.

    Scott Clauson Boone, Iowa

  4. I just learned that professor Kihl Young Whan has passed away through a friend over the telephone this afternoon. What a loss to the scholarship of contemporary Korean politics and beyond. He was a rare and genuine scholar. During the Korean War he fought against the North Korean aggression as a member of marine corps. I got to know him better when a party of six South Korea-born political scientists visited North Korea in the summer of 1981. He was like my elder brother, kind and caring.

    My deepest condolence to his wife and family.

    Yang Sung Chul and Daisy C.J. L. Yang

    1. Kyu Ho Youm says:

      Thanks for sharing your wonderful memory of the late Prof. Kihl. During our resident fellowship at IFES in 1994, he and I enjoyed chatting about our shared experiences in the US. He was unfailingly kindhearted and eager to encourage me with his life wisdom. I am so grateful for his personal and professional mentorship.

  5. Una says:

    An extremely intelligent and hardworking man. He is deeply missed.

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