The following happened on March 1, 2002, when General Kim Jong Il visited a women’s company of the KPA.
That day he had talks with the triplets who were serving as soldiers of the company.
With a kind smile he asked them their names.
“I am Yun Hwang Ok.”
“I am Yun Kum Ok.”
“I am Yun San Ok.”
He said smilingly that when the second letters of the names were put together, it was Hwang Kum San (Gold mountain), adding that the names were meaningful.
The triplets hailed from a mountain village in Yangdok County, South Phyongan Province, where President Kim Il Sung had opened up a new history of “Gold mountains” after the country’s liberation. They were so named by their parents, who wished to hand down the legendary tale to posterity.
Kim Jong Il grasped the meaning of their names immediately and asked them when they had joined the army and what their parents were.
Then he said, “You were born at the Pyongyang Maternity Hospital, weren’t you?”
They said yes.
“Did you receive gold rings?” he asked.
They replied they did. They felt gratitude to him for having airplanes dispatched to carry women who were pregnant with triplets, had tonics and gold rings sent to female triplets and silver daggers to male triplets as a token of their birth.
Kim Jong Il said that the parents would be very pleased to see their children grown up into stout soldiers, adding that they might have difficulties serving the army but he was sure they would overcome them.
Then he asked how tall their parents were and whom they resembled.
The eldest of the triplets said, “My second sister resembles mother and my third sister, father. And I am a hybrid of them.”
He laughed heartily and said, “These triplets are still young and their parents are tall. So they will grow taller.”
Then he ordered the officers to report to him how tall they grew year by year.
They, as well as the girls, were moved to tears.
Later, data about the triplets’ growth were regularly reported to the Supreme Headquarters.