1-A feeling of pride

12 Tháng Năm 201012:00 SA(Xem: 1928)
1-A feeling of pride

I was in Miami for four days. I spent the first day at Kim Anh’s new house, but I decided to spend the next three days at Uncle Luu Hung's, realizing this was a rare opportunity for me to learn from my host’s life-long experience. Through the few conversations I had with him, I learned a great deal from this old and wise man with so much experience: from the Viet Minh period when he had to live in the resistance zone, to his evacuation to South Viet Nam, and finally to his emigration to the United States and resettlement in Miami.

 

On the wall of Uncle Hung's living room, I saw the citation of the US Army Commendation Medal with "V" Device ( V= Valor), which was awarded to Luu Huyen for meritorious action while he commanded a Joint Vietnamese-American reconnaissance team in an operation against the enemy maquis. (Uncle Hung was an official of the Chieu Hoi (Open Arms) Ministry under the First and Second Republics).

 

Luu Huyen passed away when his son Doan was only two and a half years old. On the day of my visit to Miami Doan was 18 and a student at UCLA. Although fifteen years had elapsed, Mr. and Mrs. Buu Hung were filled with emotion each time I mentioned Huyen's name: they spoke about their son with much pride in their voices and on their faces. Uncle Hung showed me an album containing photos of Huyen's funeral. The photo that moved me the most was the one showing little Doan wearing mourning garb, with a pacifier in his mouth. In another picture, he held on to his mother's dress. In yet another he stood by himself next to the wreaths of flowers in front of his father's coffin. Everyone in the funeral procession was preoccupied or crying bitterly for the deceased. Doan was then too small to know the big loss of his life.

 

Doan was an excellent student at Mayfair High School in Cerritos, California. I had the chance to read the school newspaper and learned that he had earned the Cal Grant Scholarship, Honorable Mentions, PTA Council Scholarship, and several commendation certificates from the school.

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