Chun Doo-hwan (born January 18, 1931) was a former ROK Army general and the President of South Korea from 1980 to 1988. Chun was sentenced to death in 1996 for the Gwangju massacre, but later pardoned by President Kim Young-sam with the advice of then President-elect Kim Dae-jung, whom Chun himself had sentenced to death some 20 years earlier.
Chun was born 18 January 1931 in Yulgok-myeon, a poor farming town in Hapcheon, South Gyeongsang province, during Japanese rule of Korea. Chun Doo-hwan was the fourth son of Chun Sang-woo and Kim Jeong-mun. Chun's oldest two brothers, Yeol-hwan and Kyuu-gon, died in an accident when he was an infant. Chun grew up knowing his remaining older brother Ki-hwan and younger brother Kyeong-hwan.
Around 1936, Chun's family moved to Daegu, where he began attending Horan Elementary School. Chun's father had had run-ins with the Japanese police in the past, and in the winter of 1939 he murdered a Japanese police captain. Their family immediately fled to Jilin, China, where they stayed in hiding for two years before returning. When Chun finally started attending elementary school again, he ended up 2–3 years behind his original classmates.