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Last Days in Vietnam: The Nguyen Family Remembers

In the last days of the Vietnam War, 6-year-old Miki Nguyen, along with his brother, his sister and his mother, leapt from a hovering Chinook helicopter, piloted by Nguyen's father, onto the deck of the USS Kirk Navy ship.

Forty years later, Miki, Mina and Nho Nguyen talk about life growing up during the Vietnam War, as well as what they remember about their father's heroic actions that day.

Last Days in Vietnam airs Tuesday, April 28 at 9 p.m. on KCTS 9.

Miki Nguyen was only 6-years-old when his family escaped Vietnam.  His father was a Chinook helicopter pilot for the South Vietnamese army and almost lost his life ensuring his family's safety. Without knowing their destination, Miki's father gathered his family and headed out over the ocean. Low on fuel, he spotted the USS Kirk and signalled for help. Without the ability to land the massive Chinook helicopter, Miki, his brother, his sister and his mother had only one option: To jump from the helicopter onto the deck of the USS Kirk. After making sure his family had landed safely, Miki's father proceeded to hover over the ocean and jump from the helicopter as it plummeted into the ocean.

Miki and his family now live in Redmond, WA. In the following conversations, Miki, his sister Mina and his mother Nho talk about those harrowing last days in Vietnam.

See the amazing footage of their escape in Last Days of Vietnam, airing Tuesday, April 28 at 9 p.m. on KCTS 9.

 

Getting on the Chinook and leaving from grandma's house

The helicopter maneuver that saved Miki's dad's life

Growing up on a military base

Last Days in Vietnam as a pivotal moment in many lives

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