The Korean Augmentation to the U.S. Army program has existed for more than 60 years and it showcases the alliance between the Republic of Korea and the U.S. But for Pfc. Sanghyeok Park from La Crescenta, an automated logistical specialist assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, 210th Field Artillery Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division, it means family.
Park is a Korean-American soldier serving in the U.S. Army. His father served as a ROK counterpart for the U.S. Army, as a KATUSA, roughly 35 years ago.
“It means a lot to me to be serving here in Korea, especially when my father served as a KATUSA,” said Park. “He is also very proud that I am a U.S. soldier now.”
Park had to leave his father behind and move to the U.S. with the rest of his family when he was a child. Now, Park is able to see his father more often.
“I try to see him as much as possible,” said Park. “We have been apart for so long, way too long.”
For Park, serving in Korea has allowed him to build a stronger relationship with his father.