General Paik is the first General (four-star) of the South Korean Army and Hero of the Korean War. He served both Manchukuo and South Korea, the latter during the Korean War. General Paik is known for his service during the Korean War. His brother, Paik In-Yeop, also served in the Republic of Korea Army during the Korean War, commanding the 17th Independent Regiment at the Battle of Ongjin and again in the Inchon Landings.
Paik successively filled the positions of commander of the First Field Army, the Army Chief of Staff, and the Chairman for the ROK Joint Chiefs of Staff until his retirement from the army in May 1960. He was appointed Ambassador to the Republic of China on Taiwan in 1960, to France in 1961, and to Canada in 1965. From 1969 to 1971, he served as Minister of Transportation and launched the construction of the Seoul Metropolitan Subway. In 1970 he faced the hijacking of a Japan Airlines plane at Gimpo Airport by the Japanese Red Army. He served as the president of two national policy companies in sequence. He participated in the construction of the War Memorial at Yongsan, which opened in 1990. General Paik is the author of From Pusan to Panmunjom: Wartime Memoirs of the Republic of Korea's First Four-Star General.