|DAY6's Young K / Courtesy of JYP Entertainment|
By Dong Sun-hwa
Young K, vocalist and guitarist of boy band DAY6, has become the first K-pop idol to join the KATUSA (Korean Augmentation To the United States Army) for his compulsory military service.
According to his record label, JYP Entertainment, Young K, 27, will enlist Tuesday and undergo basic military training for five weeks before being assigned to a unit.
"I want to use my time wisely while serving my duty," Young K said through his company. "I hope I can play a live concert in front of crowds once I return."
The competition to join the KATUSA ― which is known for its better treatment of soldiers ― is extremely intense, with only around 2,000 men being chosen every year. All able-bodied men aged between 18 and 28, who meet the minimum required scores on English proficiency tests such as the TOEIC, TEPS and TOEFL, are eligible to apply.
Young K, who attended middle school in Canada and studied business management at Dongguk University, is known to have achieved high TOEIC and TOEFL scores. He previously revealed that his father was also a member of the KATUSA.
Young K, whose real name is Kang Young-hyun, is the second DAY6 member to start his military duty, following Sungjin, who enlisted in March. The vocalist and guitarist is set to be discharged from his service in April 2023.
Young K debuted as a member of DAY6 in 2015 with the EP, "The Day." After dropping a series of hits, such as "Congratulations" (2015) and "Sweet Chaos" (2019), as part of DAY6, he released his first solo mini-album, "Eternal," in September.