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Backbone of the Wolf Pack: ROKAF Public Affairs Capt. Yo-Sep Lee

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Shannon Braaten
  • 8th Fighter Wing Public Affairs

Often hidden behind a blinding flash of light or the glare of a camera lens, public affairs Airmen are a familiar sight at most ceremonies or training events. Their work is seen by hundreds of thousands of people online and in papers; but how much do you know about the individuals behind the viewfinder? 

Since his arrival to the 38th Fighter Group at Kunsan Air Base in December 2021, Republic of Korea Air Force Capt. Yo-Sep Lee has worked tirelessly building upon and maintaining the ROK and U.S. alliance through his work. As the 38th FG Public Affairs Office chief, he helps with public relations, recreation events, documentation, and education on the base.

Although Lee credits his senior public affairs officers who helped in teaching him how to serve as an Airman, the passion he has for the job is uniquely his. Whether it's sweating it out on the flightline or shooting through the dizziness of taking photos on a fighter jet — he’s increasingly gained knowledge and experience to help perfect his craft.

“At least on this ground, a good officer is not a master of one field but a jack of all trades since understanding is necessary to publicize different operations and exercises,” added Lee.

Armed with his ability to think on his feet, Lee utilizes his communication expertise to increase public awareness and understanding of the armed forces.

“I usually liken public relations in the Air Force to an effective couple's relationship,” Lee said fondly. “Lovers never knock on each other's doors. Vivid words that deliver what you feel can make the door open and minds closer. We make a difference in citizens' trust and support for their forces.”

As a key player in communicating Kunsan’s mission, Lee works alongside 8th Fighter Wing public affairs team in an integrated and purposeful way to achieve common operational goals during bilateral operations.

“It is a unique opportunity to have another seasoned public affairs officer on base,” said Capt. K. Paige Hankerson, 8th Fighter Wing Public Affairs chief. “Especially with the pace and complexity of the mission [at Kunsan], I am thankful to work with Captain Lee. He is skilled and always ensures that the ROKAF story is being told.”

The 38th Fighter Group is more than just a tenant unit on Kunsan Air Base. The unit frequently conducts bilateral operations with 8th Fighter Wing’s assets and the strong bond between the two PA offices mirrors the commitment each nation has to ensuring peace on the peninsula.  

“Relations in Kunsan play a crucial role in the peninsula-wide airspace as two nations share the same runway. We share the same destiny,” Lee added. “Considering our different cultures, languages and short tours, these strong bonds need sustainable commitments to become stronger.”