The American Lawyer covered the 40th anniversary of the Fall of Saigon, the worst defeat in U.S. military history, and featured four Vietnamese-American attorneys who were among or connected to the 130,000 refugees that had left Vietnam. One of the attorneys featured was Gardere Partner Hoang Quan Vu.
At the age of 5, Mr. Vu and his family boarded an overcrowded oil tanker with hundreds of other South Vietnamese refugees. After traveling from the Philippines to Singapore and then to Guam, Mr. Vu recalled his father sleeping outside in the rain so that the rest of the family could have room inside of a tent. A hearty meal was a half-bowl of rice, and his brother developed rheumatic fever during the "odyssey."
According to Mr. Vu, the experience was a driving force for his motivation to succeed in his adopted country. "I understand that the war here in the U.S. is still controversial, but from a South Vietnamese perspective, I have nothing but gratitude and appreciation for the opportunity this country gave me and all those who sacrificed for us," Mr. Vu said.
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