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Historical marker dedicated at Roanoke College

Published: Mar. 31, 2022 at 7:16 PM EDT
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SALEM, Va. (WDBJ) - One of Virginia’s newest historical highway markers profiles one of Roanoke College’s most influential graduates.

Kim Kyusik was born in Korea, and graduated from Roanoke College in 1903. He was an influential leader in the Korean independence movement. During a ceremony Thursday morning, Roanoke College President Michael Maxey said Kyusik was probably the Roanoke graduate who’s had the greatest influence on world affairs.

“This is really one of the world-shapers that went to college here and so we’re so proud of him.”

If Roanoke College is proud, so are students from Cumberland Middle School, who were in the audience Thursday morning.

They took part in a statewide contest to recognize Asian American and Pacific Islanders who have played important roles in Virginia history. And they nominated Kyusik.

“The first thing that I saw is that he went to Roanoke College,” said Cumberland Middle School student De’Von Carter.

“And then he fought for independence, and I thought that was pretty cool,” Carter said. “And I wanted to vote for him.”

“They did absolutely fantastic,” said their teacher Lewis Longenecker. “They worked hard, and they’re responsible for the marker behind me.”

The students visited the historical marker, located along High Street on the Roanoke College campus.

Two more markers they championed will be dedicated soon in Cumberland and Williamsburg.

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