CAMP CASEY, South Korea - Many U.S. soldiers are being
deployed abroad. Some soldiers might be sad to be far away
from their hometown, but living in Korea can be more
enjoyable than they think.
Sgt. 1st Class Robert
Carle, from Tecate, Calif., the 210th Fires Brigade sexual
assault response coordinator, is a soldier who has been
deployed to Korea for a long time.
In the beginning
of his career, he didn't expect to come to Korea. However,
since joining the Army, Carle has been deployed to Korea
twice for a total of 10 years.
U.S. Army Sgt. 1st Class Robert Carle, 210th Fires Brigade sexual assault
response coordinator, poses for a photo in front of SHARP poster on
August 19, 2013.
(U.S. Army photo by Cpl. Han-byeol Kim)
“I originally joined
the Army as a high school student in the summer between my
junior and senior years of high school. The reason was
simply to have a summer job,” said Carle. “I guess I didn't
realize at the moment that the summer job was going to be
Army boot camp.”
After adjusting to the culture of
the Army, Carle had a challenge to learn a new culture all
“When I came to Korea for the first time,
my main difficulties were related to communication,” he
So, Carle worked hard to learn more about Korea
and Korean culture. He was never afraid to make Korea more
of a home to him than just an assignment.
“One of my
first college classes during my first deployment to Korea
was Hangul and I took three more classes after that,” he
said. “I started attending a Korean church and made many
friends that really enjoyed sharing with me about the Korean
He has grown to like Korea particularly
because of three things: food, people and mountains.
“You can always count on someone helping you find your way,
even when there may be a language barrier. People are kind
and generally respectful,” he said. “There is always a
mountain to climb here in Korea and paired with that, you
will always find a nice stream of water to relax and enjoy a
nice cold cup of Makgeolli.”
Carle enjoys traveling
and seeing new places in Korea. Even though he has been in
Korea for years, he thinks there is so much more to
Another thing that only soldiers in Korea
can experience is working with Korean Augmentation to the
United States Army soldiers. These are Korean soldiers who
work alongside American soldiers.
Carle says he is
lucky to have that chance.
“I have always enjoyed
working with KATUSAs,” he said. “I actually still keep in
touch with many KATUSAs that have come and gone who are now
productive members of Korean society.”
having his wife here helped him a lot with living and
broadening his experience in Korea.
introduced me to more friends and a deeper understanding of
Korean family style,” he said. “I learned a deeper meaning
of national holidays. I was able to take part in those, and
He has some advice for soldiers who
are new to the country, too. He wants soldiers not to be
afraid to learn something new and enjoy their time.
“Gather up some buddies, including KATUSAs, and head out to
explore Korea,” he said. “You will not regret it. Instead,
you will build everlasting memories that will have true
Carle considers Korea a memorable and
enjoyable place where he has learned so much about himself
through experiencing the Korean culture.
By U.S. Army Cpl. Han-byeol Kim
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