Currently governed by Seoul, the Dhok islands are located in the Eastern Sea, according to South Korea. Japan, however, calls the Takeshima Islands and refers to their waters as the Japanese Sea.
For years, the couple was only permanent residents of the smaller islands, although other people, such as policemen, headlamp operators and tourists, will come and go periodically.
Bad weather can cut off the islands from the outside world for weeks, but their surrounding waters were a rich fishing area. Kim, originally from Jeju island, has worked as a "hanio", a traditional female fader, until 2017 when bad health has led her to quit.
But after the death of her husband, Kim Sung-do, last October, the 81
"She said Dico's life is relaxing," said her son-in-law, Kim Kung-chul.