New USFK chief pays tribute to late Korean general in first public event

SEOUL-- New U.S. Forces Korea Commander Gen. Paul LaCamera paid tribute to the late Korean War hero Paik Sun-yup on Friday to mark his first death anniversary, calling him an "incredible leader, patriot and friend."

The U.S. general made the remark during a forum to remember Paik in the southeastern county of Chilgok, one day ahead of the first anniversary of his death.

"The alliance lost an incredible leader, patriot and friend one year ago with the passing of the late Gen. Paik Sun-yup," LaCamera said during the event broadcast live online. It was his first public event since inauguration as the chief of the 28,500-strong American troops here last week.

"I know him as a man of legacy and his contributions are almost too many to name," LaCamera said.

Paik was South Korea's first four-star general and a renowned war hero who led key battles during the 1950-53 Korean War.

Calling Paik the "spiritual roots and symbol" of the South Korea-U.S. alliance, Defense Minister Suh Wook vowed to continue efforts to establish peace on the Korean Peninsula based on a firm combined defense posture.

"We will do our best to upgrade and develop the South Korea-U.S. alliance so that it can become a great alliance," Suh said.

Source: Yonhap News Agency

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