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After 51 years of service to the Far East District, Kang Kil-su hangs up hard-hat for good

Published Jan. 10, 2018

Kang Kil-su, quality assurance representative for the southern resident office, with Command Sgt. Major Antonio S. Jones.


Kang, Kil-su, quality assurance representative for the southern resident office, poses for a picture in 1979 outside the Space Track Observation Facility. He worked as the QAR for this project.

More than fifty-one years after walking into the United States Army Corps of Engineers, Far East District’s southern resident office on June 27, 1966, Kang Kil-su, a quality assurance representative (QAR), is finally hanging up his hard-hat.

Kang began his engineering studies at Yeungnam University located in Daegu in the 1960’s.

“I decided to study engineering because it was easier to get a job with this degree at that time,” said Kang.

Kang stated that after his studies, when he was 26 years-old, he worked as a contractor on the Daegu airfield runway project for the district.

“I came to know about the district while working on the project and that’s how I came to know and work for the Far East District,” said Kang.  

Since coming to the district he has seen numerous changes throughout his career.

In the early years he didn’t use any computers. Kang explained that all the quality assurance representative reports were written on carbon paper and filed in cabinets.

He said one project, the space track observation facility, stands out from the rest. The facility is at a mountain site south of the Daegu area and it required blasting the rock to ensure the building had a strong and steady foundation. 


“It was very cold and it snowed severely at that time,” said Kang. You wouldn’t believe we were in Korea, it felt and looked like we were in Alaska.”


In 2000 Kang’s hard work and dedication to the district was recognized as he was selected as the district’s nominee for the Pacific Ocean Division’s Hard Hat of the Year award.

Kang’s upcoming retirement will provide him a chance to relax and enjoy activities of leisure.

“I plan to play golf and take time to go hiking,” said Kang. “I have no specific plans, but I would like to catch up with friends.”

Kang left this gracious message to his fellow district teammates.

“The people I have worked with were great,” said Kang. “We were a great team together. I would like to thank them for working in harmony as a team.”