By Antwaun J. Parrish
USACE Far East District Public Affairs
U.S. ARMY GARRISON HUMPHREYS, South Korea -- The Camp Humphreys community is being presented with an early Christmas gift, as they’ll be able to shop at the newly built Post Exchange (PX) starting in late November.
Col. Garrett Cottrell, Deputy Military Chief, United States Army Corps of Engineers Far East District and Col. Jeong Se Ok, Director General Korean Ministry of National Defense United States Forces Korea Relocation Office, signed the acceptance release letter (ARL), signifying the completion of the new PX, during a ceremony held at U.S. Army Garrison Humphreys Sep. 7.
“General Vandal wants it done for the Christmas holidays and we’re going to have it done,” said Katherine Leschber, Senior Master Planner, Pacific Region Army Air Force Exchange Services.
This facility will be the second largest PX overseas. In an effort to ensure that the facility is ready to open by the holiday associates and leaders from Army and Air Force Exchange Services (AAFES) locations at Fort Bragg, and installations in Alaska, and Okinawa are helping the local team prepare.
According to the general manager, about 120 containers have been unloaded and there are still about 200 more containers to unload in preparation for the store opening.
Leschber stated that the ARL signing is a great moment signifying all the work that has been put into this project.
“I give credit to the Far East District’s Tom McDonald,” said Leschber. “When he came in, he did not play around. He was not going to let the contractors say no, or that this was going to take a long time. He stayed on top of it and made sure it got done.”
Tom McDonald works as a construction representative and project engineer for the Far East District. He said the project was set to be finished at a later date but at the general’s request the effort was pushed and it worked.
“It was a tough task to get this done on the General’s timeline and when AAFES wanted,” said McDonald.“But with the help of the contractor and the Department of Public Works it worked.”
As U.S. Army Garrison Yongsan is relocating its assets to Camp Humphreys, this is one of many projects that have been completed in support of the relocation efforts.
“Our goal is to give quality outstanding projects to the Soldiers and the community as far as the Far East District is concerned,” said McDonald. “It’s been a tough road, but FED is going to keep pushing and try to get Yongsan here and give them quality products.”