Cary News

Businessman trades Wall Street for auto repair shop

Charles Yun, owner of Christian Brothers Automotive, plans to open this month on Holly Springs Road.
Charles Yun, owner of Christian Brothers Automotive, plans to open this month on Holly Springs Road. CINDY SCHAEFER

When Charles Yun emigrated from South Korea with his family, he knew three words in English: apple, Coke and Mom. It was a good start for a 9-year-old boy in Brooklyn, where the family settled.

More than 35 years later, Yun speaks with a New York accent and is proud to be an American citizen.

“There’s an inside joke at my church,” he said. “I’m a banana. Yellow on the outside and white on the inside. The way I do things is American.

“I have been blessed to assimilate into the American culture and be a part of the stars and stripes.”

Yun owns Christian Brothers Automotive, set to open soon at the corner of Holly Springs and Ten Ten roads. With nine service bays, technicians will be able to handle multiple customers at once.

“What makes us unique is that we can service every make and model from A to Z,” he said. “We use the best parts. They are not second-market, cheap parts.”

Christian Brothers Automotive is a national company founded on Christian principles. His franchise is the fourth in North Carolina and the first in the Triangle.

Automotive repair was not an expected path for Yun. After college, he had a successful career as a trader on Wall Street. But the hustle and bustle was not the environment he wanted for his family.

In 2010, he moved his wife and two children to North Carolina.

“This is a great country,” he said. “North Carolina is a better place for my family. I chose Chapel Hill because I wanted my children to have a solid education.”

Yun telecommuted for three years, but as it became evident that his Wall Street career would soon be phased out by changing technology, he began searching for new opportunities. He credits God for leading him to Christian Brothers.

“I was looking for land for other franchises when the check engine light came on in my 10-year-old Odyssey,” he recalls. “I was angry because I thought I had the problem fixed a year ago.

“I realized this was a message from God that this is a business that has a black eye with the public and you could help out.”

He remembered reading about Christian Brothers in a magazine. Two months later, Yun was granted a franchise.

Yun said he learned how to run a successful business by watching his father, who owned a dry-cleaning store in Brooklyn for more than 20 years.

“When he started, he knew less English than I did,” he said. “By the time he closed and moved on, the neighborhood was saddened to see him leave. I helped him out during the summer days, and I learned that it’s about taking care of your customers.”

Christian Brothers operates with the same concern for the customers, Yun said.

“I like the fact that they’re faith-based and open and transparent. I get to practice my faith in this business,” he said. “We definitely practice Christian principles. We have Christ’s name on the building.”

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About Christian Brothers Automotive

Location: 8705 Holly Springs Road, Apex

Contact: 919-589-3774,