Super Junior‘s Donghae will say farewell to his members later today as he prepares for his enlistment.
Donghae posted to his Instagram with the caption, “ELF! I’m sorry that you’ll feel lonely for the next year and nine months because of me. I think since I’m enlisting on my birthday, it’ll make the day more meaningful. I will come back safe and handsome. ELF I love you! Let’s meet again after I come back with Eunhyuk ^^.”
He also posted a picture of a bowl of seaweed soup (a birthday tradition in Korea), writing, “The seaweed soup my mother made for me. Reliable mother! ELF, I’ll see you in a bit ^^.”
According to a statement from SM Entertainment, the time and location will not be announced and Donghae will be enlisting quietly without a press conference.
Despite this, ELF were determined to give Donghae a grand send-off. Donghae’s most recent post on Instagram shows banner after banner put up by fans with loving messages for the Super Junior member, saying, “Be careful with our Donghae for 21 months, and return him in one piece, please <3. Donghae, thank you for being born <3,” “Happy birthday, Donghae! Take care. Till we meet again,” “Oppa, happy birthday~ We’ll always miss you. When you come back after 21 months, let’s not be apart any more.”
Along with the post, Donghae said, “I’ll go graciously ^^ heh.”
Donghae’s fellow members also offered their words in support of Donghae. Kangin took to his Instagram with a picture with Donghae from the day he was discharged from the army. He wrote: “It seems like only yesterday [that this picture was taken] and now it’s my brother’s turn to leave…” Yesung also posted a picture of himself with Donghae, saying, “Brother, my brother, I love you. Happy birthday. #YeDong”
Kyuhyun talked about both Eunhyuk and Donghae on a live stream via the Naver V app on the evening of October 14. He said, “I think Eunhyuk will do well no matter where he goes, but I’m really worried about Donghae. But Donghae is someone who is very loved, so I think he’ll be okay.”
Update: More photos have been shared by the members of Super Junior. Leeteuk has shared his farewells to his Instagram. On the first photo, he wrote: “Donghae, let’s eat and have a good time on your birthday after next! I miss you ㅠㅠ.” A second photo had the caption: “Our Donghae, come back safely! Don’t get sick~ don’t get hurt~ Let’s be happy! I love you! I delayed my flight to Switzerland for a schedule to be able to see Eunhyuk off, but I wasn’t able to stay as long as I hoped. I’m sorry ㅠㅠ My heart is heavy~ I love you! So does Yesung, and Minho, and Joonmyun, and Chanyeol!”
Heechul simply put a crying emoticon along with a picture of him, Donghae and Eunhyuk. In the picture, both Donghae and Eunhyuk sport freshly-cut hair.
Yesung posted another picture to Twitter. He wrote: “Even your shaved head suits you… Who will go on walks and chat with me at the Han River while you’re gone… I’ll probably be really lonely. Come back safe and healthy. #YeDong”
Update 2: It seems the boys of EXO went to go see Donghae off to the military, as well! Leeteuk posted yet another photo to his Instagram, writing: “Joonmyun, Chanyeol, Sehun! And Zhou Mi~ Thank you for going to see Donghae off! ^^”