Hmong Memorial Monument Celebration in France - by Dr. Shoua Yang
Post date: Jul 28, 2013 5:35:54 AM
On June 6, Mr. Cha Yia Thao, his wife Nhia True Thao, and Dr. Shoua Yang took off from Rochester, Minnesota, to Chicago, and then to Paris, France. Mr. Wa Toua Yang, under the guidance of the Mr. You Cher Thao, picked us up at the Charles de Charles de Gaulle International Airport. We then went to Aubigny, a small town located two hours from Paris, where the Hmong Memorial Monument rises and where Mr. Youa Cher Thao, the principal leader of the event, has been resided.
A reception dinner was hosted by Mr. Youa Cher Thao. Two French former soldiers who fought alongside with the Hmong in Laos since 1945 until 1954 were among the guests at the reception. Thanks to Mr. Thao, especially his wife who did most of the arrangement.
In the evening, we watched a film of the conflicts between the French and the Vietminh at the Battle of Dien Bien Phu in 1954, when the French were defeated in that conflict, paving the way for the Vietminh to gain independence in Tonkin.
June 7, we rested and then visited the Hmong Memorial Monument engraved with the French language, which is translated in English: Memorial of the “Hmong Died for the French.”
June 8, we honored the Hmong warriors at the site of the Monument on the daytime, when a series of speeches was made by both the French elected officials and the Hmong community leaders in memory and honor of the Hmong warriors who sacrificed their lives in Laos. In the evening, we, then, regrouped in a community center, where we ate and another series of speeches was made, including the one that delivered by me on behalf of HNO.
About 1,000 Hmong people, from around the country, and French attended the daytime and night-day events. Hundreds of these Hmong approached Cha Yia Thao, his wife, and Dr. Shoua Yang to express their views in support of the Vision, Mission, and the institution of the HNO for the collective interests of the Hmong.
June 9, we travelled back to Paris, where we stayed in Mr. Ka Neng Yang’s house. He is a brother-in-law of Mr. Cha Yia Thao. Thanks to Mr. Yang and his wife who provided us great hospitality. Other thanks also go to Mr. Cher Chai Yang, another brother in law of Cha Yia Thao, who toured us Paris and other nearby cities of Paris.
June 10, the three of us travelled to Nimes in southern France for another meeting with the Hmong there, since they invited us to give them more information about the vision, mission, and structure of HNO. Thanks to Mr. Yang Alain who provided us a night hospitality—great fruits and food. Other thanks also go other Hmong who arranged a dinner for us, attended by several Hmong key leaders of the community.
We spent several hours to discuss the vision, mission, and structure of HNO. After the meeting, the participants voted to accept HNO and therefore elected Mr. Yang Alain, Mr. T Cha Chimeng, and Ya Lue to represent HNO in Nimes.
On 11, we returned to Paris, where we stayed in Mr. Ka Neng Yang’s residence.
On 12, Mr. Youa Cher Thao had arranged a visit of the French National Assembly, where we toured the Legislative Chamber and listened to a short debate of the members on a number of issues. We met the French representative who is responsible for Lao affairs. Thanks for the glasses of wine at the National Assembly.
On this day, Mr. Ka Neng Yang hosted a reception for us, where about 50 people, including Major Vang Neng, attended the event. After the event, we spent three hours meeting and talking to Major Vang Neng, who also expressed his support for the vision, mission, and structure of HNO.
On 13, we visited the City of Versailles, where the former royal palace located. There, I had the liberty to see the statute of Louis XIV (1638 – 1715), the sun king of the French who claimed to be the representative of God in France and thus ruled with absolutism. Once again, thanks Mr. Ka Neng Yang and Cher Chai Yang who toured us the cities.
On the 14, I accompanied Mr. Cha Yia Thao and his wife for family visits, including the graves of their parents. We, then, returned to Aubigny for HNO conference.
On 15, we hosted the HNO conference in Aubigny from 10 PM to 6 PM. After giving the information of the audience, approximately 100 people attended the training, including 16 heads of the Hmong organizations at the leadership training, the conference voted to accept HNO and elected Mr. Wa Toua Yang, who in turn chose several community leaders to represent HNO in this region. Thanks for their volunteered services.
We then return to Pairs, where we stayed once again in Mr. Ka Neng Yang’s residence.
On the 16, I accompanied Mr. Cha Yia Thao and wife for more family visits. On this day, Major Vang Neng also hosted a dinner for us. Great wine, food, and hospitality, Thanks!
On the 17, at 8 AM, Mr. Ka Neng Yang and Mr. Vang Tsua Yang dropped us off at the airport, where we flew back to Chicago and then Rochester, Minnesota. Thanks to members of Mr. Cha Yia Thao’s family who dropped us off and picked us up at the airport in Rochester, Minnesota. This concluded the trip—safe and sounded!
Thanks for members of the HNO, friends, and colleagues, who made the trip possible!