Salt Lake Media 1990-2009

The Valley's Real Wild Flowers Eager, Active Vietnamese Children

September 27, 2009, 12:51 pm
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Payman was thrust into the role of ambassador to the first wave of Vietnamese refugees to arrive in Salt Lake City in 1980. He advocated for, and wrote about them often.  This 1985 article was the first one published in the local paper and the basis of chapter 7, ‘Undesirables?’ I Was The One Who Killed Jesus.

I will never forget Huy. He was short, agile, and nimble. He moved around like a basketball player. He was a ball of fire. The kids called him ‘Helicopter’. Often he came to class late. He opened the door quickly and sank into his seat noiselessly. He never gave me a chance to protest. He didn’t like the name ‘Helicopter’. It reminded him of a tragic part of his young life story. His father fastened him to his back with rope in the last minutes as Saigon was handed to the communists. Huy’s Father carried him to a helicopter. He told of how his sister was suffocated on her mom’s chest while the mother was plowing her way through the throngs and swarms of the fleeing people. His little sister’s dead body was thrown out of the helicopter by the pilot along with heavy baggage. He said, “My sister’s name meant blue bird. I saw her when she flew for the last time”.

My little Huy was a poet not a helicopter.

The Valley's Real Wild Flowers Appear As Eager, Active Vietnamese Children (580px, full page 800px, PDF)

. The Valley's Real Wild Flowers Eager, Active Vietnamese Children

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(2009). The Valley's Real Wild Flowers Eager, Active Vietnamese Children. Retrieved from http://www.cameljockeygohome.com/view/article/51cbeb7a7896bb431f688ac9

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