Members of Nephi family caught up in deadly crowd surge in South Korea

Oct 30, 2022, 4:36 PM | Updated: Oct 31, 2022, 10:18 am

NEPHI, Utah — A family from Nephi is holding onto each other more closely after their children witnessed a disaster overseas.

Rein Warner, 24, and Regan Warner, 26, were among the thousands of people gathered for a Halloween celebration in Seoul, South Korea, on Saturday. A crowd surge at the event left more than 150 people dead.

World leaders grieve deadly Halloween crowd surge in Seoul

Regan is a teacher in South Korea. She traded the quiet roads of her hometown for the narrow, high-traffic streets of Daegu, which is a few hours away from Seoul.

“She fell in love with the culture,” said Jalena Warner, Rein and Regan’s mother. “She loves K-pop.”

Regan’s brother, Rein, was in town to visit his sister. They went out in costume to celebrate Halloween with thousands of other people, many of them their age.

“It’s a street celebration,” Warner said. “They went on Friday night. She had been the last three years. There’s restaurants, dance clubs, music.”

The Halloween event turned into a real-life horror when the crowd swelled and people were crushed.

Thousands of miles away, Warner said she wasn’t aware of what was happening until her mother called.

“I could hear the panic in her voice, and she said, ‘You need to call your kids. It’s all over the news,'” Warner said.

She called her son and daughter and anxiously waited for them to pick up.

“Finally, Regan answered her phone, and before I could say anything, she said, ‘We’re all OK,'” Warner said.

What they witnessed haunts them.

“She said, ‘You could not move,’ and she felt like if they had been any further in, they would’ve been separated,” Warner said.

Packed in shoulder to shoulder, Rein and Regan were able to find their way out of the crowd.

“Just seeing the people doing CPR on others, and injured and even the dead lying, I think it’s something they won’t soon forget,” Warner said.

Her children made it back to their Airbnb and then headed back to Daegu.

Warner said they’re thinking of the families who will never hear back from their loved ones.

“They were all just kids there to enjoy Halloween and celebrate,” she said.

Warner said her children are safe and together. Her son, Rein, comes home in a week. She said that will be a sweet reunion, but they’re thinking of the many families who won’t be reunited with their own children after this deadly event.

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

Local News

Randy Martin working on a reading station in West Valley City. (KSL-TV's Mike Anderson)...
Mike Anderson

Utah air quality is continuing to get worse, says USU professor

A Utah State University professor says that Utahns are breathing some of the worst air we've seen in over a decade.
1 day ago
The area where first responders rescued the two people (Weber Fire District)...
Michael Houck

Two rescued from Pineview Reservoir after falling through ice

Officials are warning residents of thin ice after two people needed rescuing from the Pineview Reservoir Saturday morning. 
1 day ago
(KSL TV)...
Michael Houck

Police: Man threatening neighbors with knife, leads officers in multi-agency chase

A man is in police custody after "waving" a knife around bystanders and fleeing from police Friday evening.
1 day ago
Presenters at the Health Relationship Youth Summit asking for final questions. (KSL-TV's Mark Less)...
Alex Cabrero

Utah teens learn more about healthy relationships at youth summit

Teenagers gathered at a Healthy Relationship Youth Summit to learn more about the signs of unhealthy relationships and be able to identify them.
1 day ago
snow covered bowl in Utah mountains...
Michael Houck

Woman hit by snowmobile while tubing near Peter Sinks, flown to U of U hospital

First responders treated a woman hit by a snowmobile while tubing near the Peter Sinks area Saturday afternoon.
1 day ago
For 29 years, Mike Skogerboe has been to nearly every girls and boys basketball game, and nearly ev...
Mike Anderson

Fremont High School helps support their superfan

Students and teachers at Fremont High School teamed up to help out their superfan who rarely misses a game.
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

vintage photo of lighting showroom featuring chandeliers, lamps, wall lights and mirrors...
Lighting Design

History of Lighting Design | Over 25 Years of Providing Utah With the Latest Trends and Styles

Read about the history of Lighting Design, a family-owned and operated business that paved the way for the lighting industry in Utah.
Fiber Optical cables connected to an optic ports and Network cables connected to ethernet ports...
Brian Huston, CE and Anthony Perkins, BICSI

Why Every Business Needs a Structured Cabling System

A structured cabling system benefits businesses by giving you faster processing speeds and making your network more efficient and reliable.
notebook with password notes highlighted...
PC Laptops

How to Create Strong Passwords You Can Actually Remember

Learn how you can create strong passwords that are actually easy to remember! In a short time you can create new ones in seconds.
house with for rent sign posted...
Chase Harrington, president and COO of Entrata

Top 5 Reasons You May Want to Consider Apartment Life Over Owning a Home

There are many benefits of renting that can be overshadowed by the allure of buying a home. Here are five reasons why renting might be right for you.
Festive kitchen in Christmas decorations. Christmas dining room....
Lighting Design

6 Holiday Decor Trends to Try in 2022

We've rounded out the top 6 holiday decor trends for 2022 so you can be ahead of the game before you start shopping. 
Happy diverse college or university students are having fun on their graduation day...
BYU MBA at the Marriott School of Business

How to Choose What MBA Program is Right for You: Take this Quiz Before You Apply!

Wondering what MBA program is right for you? Take this quiz before you apply to see if it will help you meet your goals.
Members of Nephi family caught up in deadly crowd surge in South Korea