SEOUL, Republic of Korea — Dave Newcomer, Supervisor Program Analyst, said goodbye to his friends and coworkers at the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Far East District Jan. 12. He is retiring after 46 years of service to the U.S. Government.
Originally from Windber, Pa., Newcomer began his career after high school in 1965 when he went to work for the U.S. Geological Survey in Washington, D.C. as an Administrative Assistant. In 1969 he married his wife Sandy and transferred to the Department of the Treasury. Later, they both relocated to Fort Worth, Texas where he joined the Fort Worth District in 1972. He has been with USACE ever since, holding various positions and deployed once to Saudi Arabia.
Throughout this time, he considers FED and Korea to be his fondest memories.
“Being in Korea has been the high point of my life and career,” said Newcomer.
In 1997 Newcomer came to FED on temporary duty to help train the District on using the new Corps of Engineers Financial Management System (CEFMS). He was then able to come back that same year with a permanent assignment. Since then he has been with the District for 13 years having only been gone for one year.
“Dave has always been a close friend and a terrific coworker,” said Loren Chin, Chief of Army Branch, Programs and Project Management Division. “At work, I can always count on him to provide the latest and most accurate financial status.”
Outside of work Newcomer has embraced Korea and its culture as his own. He has participated in events such as kimchi making, visiting ancestors’ tombs at Chuseok (Korean Thanksgiving), and travelling around the Peninsula.
“I have been to all parts of Korea thanks to my near and dear friend Lenny Kim (former FED employee),” said Newcomer. “We have traveled as far north as you can get, to the east and west coasts, south to Chinhae and even to Jeju Island and everywhere in between.”
Besides Korea, Newcomer was also able to travel to Hong Kong to celebrate the Lunar New Year with Chin and his family in 2008.
Many of Newcomer’s friends and coworkers always look forward to his friendly and cheerful personality. As a testament to his sincerity he has always made sure to learn the names of each and every one of his coworkers at FED.
“When I first started working here I thought I would never remember everyone’s name as they really differed from our own,” said Newcomer. “But after a short while I became quite a pro at remembering.”
Just recently Newcomers’ Korean colleagues in PPMD gave him his own Korean name—Kim Dae-bu. Dae-bu sounds like Dave.
“My Korean coworkers keep telling me I am too much Korean and they fear for me when I return to the States,” said Newcomer. “I have found not only the Koreans I work with to be friendly but also some outside families that adopted me to be some of the finest and friendliest people I have ever known.”
Upon retirement, Newcomer will be returning to Fort Worth.