While doing these jobs, he met a women who ran a food cart outside a night club and she encouraged him to take the general education equivalency exam in Korea so that he could finish his basic schooling and enter high school. Ultimately, he graduated from Daejeon Arts High School, but he never received any vocal training because he did not have the funds to pay for the master classes.
Undeterred, Choi would listen to music and practice singing songs. During one his stays at Kun Yang University Hospital where he was being treated for medical issues involving a car accident, Choi volunteered to perform a recital for four students who needed financial aid for schools during his in-patient stay. He continued to sing because he said that this was the one thing he loved to do after living such a hard life in early childhood.
Choi ultimately ended up on the show Korea's Got Talent and the video below shows his initial appearance. He became immensely popular in Korea during the 2012 season and he finished second in the competition. Because of his TV exposure, his background was checked intensely and has been verified by the South Korean media. Choi truly exhibits strength and courage to keep fighting in life no matter what obstacles are in your way.