Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Elgin's Chheng Bun: "I don't look back"

The Daily Herald finaly published the story on my barber: Chheng Bun and they did a great job.

Two full pages devoted to his story.
The genocide in Cambodia is one of the benchmarks of evil in the late 20th century," said Bergstrom of World Relief. "For people to have survived and flourished shows a real desire of the human will to succeed and overcome the evils they experienced."

A new generation

A quiet determination drives Bun.

He wakes each morning, drives his sons to school and reports to the barbershop, confident his boys never will begin a day wondering if they will live until night.

"You try to raise them good. You try to raise them right, raise them happy. They don't have to go through what I went through," Bun said, tears streaming down his face. He hurries to wipe them away with his shirt sleeve. "I don't look back."

Nor does he usually speak of life before Elgin. Six-year-old Justin and 3-year-old Kevin know their parents came from Cambodia. They know Bun moved to this country with their aunts and uncles more than 20 years ago.

They know their mother, Vanna, came 10 years later, a young bride who met Bun when he returned to Phom Trang to visit his father in 1994.

But of the devastation that drove the Bun family from Cambodia, they know nothing. That is how Bun prefers it, for now.

His choice is not unique.
I've never heard the story either until I read this tonight. I'll ask him to sign this paper next time I'm there. I'm glad he found a home in Elgin.

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