SHARPSVILLE, Pennsylvania (MyValleyTributes) – Kook Ja Ham, 79, of Sharpsville passed away peacefully Sunday morning, June 20, 2021, at her residence.
Mrs. Ham was born November 3, 1941, in Jinju Kyungnam, South Korea, a daughter of the late Jungi Kim and Eulkyung Kim.
Following high school graduation, she matriculated to Kyunghee University where she earned both a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree in concert piano.
A talented pianist, Kook Ja performed often while living in South Korea.
In 1973, she immigrated to the United States with her husband as he pursued his medical career. Primarily a homemaker, Kook Ja also assisted her husband in running his family medical practice in Hermitage.
Kook Ja was an active member of the Korean United Methodist Church of Youngstown, where she served as choir director and treasurer. Since 2000, she traveled with her husband to Yucatan, Mexico annually for missionary work where she cared for young children, taught music classes and provided haircuts for local villagers. She and her husband also traveled on mission trips to Jamaica, as well as Arizona, where they cared for the Hopi Indians.
Kook Ja enjoyed playing golf and tennis.
Her husband of 54 years, Dr. Tong Ho Ham, M.D., whom she married March 4, 1967, preceded her in death April 15, 2021.
Kook Ja is survived by two daughters, Julie (Andrew) Tsounos, Gibsonia, Pennsylvania and Christine Ham of Boston, Massachusetts; a son, Howard “Howie” H. Ham of Sharpsville; a grandson, Christian Tsounos and two sisters, Chong Ae Kim Park of Busan, South Korea and Young Ae Kim Joo of Seoul, South Korea.
Calling hours will be 4:00 – 7:00 p.m. Friday, June 25, 2021 in J. Bradley McGonigle Funeral Home and Crematory, Inc., 1090 E. State Street, Sharon and from 9:00 – 10:00 a.m, Saturday, June 26, 2021 in the Korean United Methodist Church, 1609 5th Avenue, Youngstown, OH 44504, prior to the 10:00 a.m. service, with Rev. Hyun Suk Kim, pastor, officiating.
The family asks that all florals and memorials be sent directly to the funeral home.
Interment will be in America’s Cemetery, Hermitage.
A television tribute will air Thursday, June 24 at the following approximate times: 7:10 a.m. on FOX, 12:22 p.m. on WKBN, 5:08 p.m. on MyYTV and 7:27 p.m. on WYTV.