Photographer's Note


Is this evacuation the last one?

For most of the refugees who abandoned their home in New Orleans behind, Hurricane Katrina maybe their first loss.

For most of the Vietnamese among the above group, it is not.


In 1954, the Geneva Agreement, Article 15d provided the temporary division of Vietnam at the 17th parallel, provisional northern (communist) and southern (noncommunist) zone governments. Wishing to go and live with relatives, they took the 1st evacuation to the South.

When the South Vietnam fell in April 30, 1975 to the northerners, they took the 2nd evacuation to the United States.

The youngest kids of the first event are now 51 year old. The term evacuation means a horrible displacement to them. They wanted no more. They melted into 50 states, and in New Orleans, they gathered in one area some 12 miles northeast of downtown, living in a community, around a street that has officially been named ”SAIGON”, zip code 70129.

Now that Katrina tragedy struck their dream of a peaceful life. They are joining the “army” of ¼ million of refugees — the largest displacement since American Civil War. Many of them are surprised, “I could not believe I had 3 evacuations in one single life. I am going to restart all over again”.

Coincidently, I visited this community first time on August 28, 2004 — exactly one year before what you see in the picture being disturbed.


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Additional Photos by Ngy Thanh (ngythanh) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 471 W: 125 N: 2332] (8458)
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