Vibrant Vietnam - 2007

UPI P HOTO - JOURNALIST Next we drove to visit a former Vietnamese reporter for UPI during the “American war”— Hoang Van Cuong.

His home was in an older section of the city, quite far from downtown, and he had it fenced and chained as if the area is not the safest. Or maybe he feared for himself personally. After his services to the American Press, he was one of the “aiders and abettors” of our presence who was not rescued by helicopter as his former friends and employers fled. Instead, he was sent into the North for re-education for seven long years. On his release, he was given no work papers, meaning no company or individual wishing to retain good relations with the communists and their new government could hire him for any job. He set about making his shabby, dirty, and derelict house and outbuildings a museum and memorial to fallen fellow journalists. He has collected many odd pieces of statuary, carvings, paintings, and memorabilia for display to tourists. He also sells oft-copied prints of some of the iconic pictures he and fellow photojournalists took during the war. In front of the house he has made a little cairn with helmets and dog tags, and pictures adorning it: this is his shrine to the fallen journalists.

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