My dad grew up in Hon Khoi Ninh Hoa, home of Vietnam’s salt fields. When he was a young boy, he left his hometown in seek of furthering his education at a high school in the Nha Trang city. While attending high school (Vo Tanh, Nha Trang), he worked several jobs including tutoring students in math. He then went on to college and completed his Masters degree in Mathematics at Dai Hoc Su Pham Qui Nhon. After graduation, he taught Math at schools in Nha Trang. During the Vietnam War, my dad joined the Republic of Vietnam Military Forces and become a captain at a young age. He met my mom in Nha Trang where they got married. After the fall of SaiGon in April 1975, Communists put him in a political prison for 7 and half years. During his time in prison, my dad tutored math for one of the young prison guards and helped him finish his degree. It was also a difficult time for our family. Life under communist control was tough, food was hard to come by and living in a 9 square meter apartment was a challenge.
My dad knew this was not the future for our family. He tried multiple times to escape Vietnam by boat. On a couple of attempts, I went with him and it was scary to hear the gun shot. If you got caught, you went to prison. He had no money. The only ticket he had was his knowledge of English. He was finally successful in 1998 escaping Vietnam. He travelled two weeks on the ocean with about 150 people in small fishing boat. His boat was hit by tropical storms, they lost direction, and the boat started taking on water. Everyone thought they would die. Then a miracle happened. They saw one Philippine fishing boat and my dad was able to ask for help. They received water, food, and directions so they could get to the Philippines. He stayed at a Philippines immigration camp for 2 years then was sponsored by a St. Louis Catholic church to immigrate to St. Louis in 1990. He worked hard to bring my mom, my sister, my brother, and myself to immigrate to St. Louis in September 1992. Over the last twenty years, he enjoyed being a private math tutor in St. Louis. Many of his students graduated in fields of Pharmacy, Engineering, and Accounting. He also taught English to many Vietnamese people in the St. Louis community as well as translate for Vietnamese people in hospitals and courthouses.
Dad, we learned so much from you. We love you and you will always be in our memory. We promise to take care of Mom. Please rest in peace. We will miss you more than words can say.
We are sad to announce that Ba Nguyen, 72, passed away on September 11, 2020 in St. Louis.
Ba was born November 27, 1948, in Vietnam. He graduated from Quy Nhon University in Vietnam with a master’s degree in education. After he graduated, he decided to pursue his dream career and become a high school math teacher. After several years of being a very successful teacher, he joined the Vietnam Army and served to protect his country. Following multiple years of service, he settled in America, working to secure a better future for his family of five. He was an extremely hard worker and as a result of this hard work, he was able to provide for his beautiful wife, Hongloan Dang, and his three beloved children.
He was determined to give his family a good life. He taught his children many important lessons, such as: When times are tough, keep on working hard because you can make tomorrow better than today. He also worked his hardest to give his children a good education. Now all of them have started loving families of their own and each of them has a successful career.
Ba Nguyen was an exceptionally hard worker. He was a devoted husband, supportive father, caring grandfather, and an overall righteous person. He loved his family very much. He has touched many lives and will be missed by many.
He will be greatly missed by his family, including: his; wife, Hongloan Dang; daughters Kim Wood and Kate Nguyen; son Kevin Nguyen sons in law Jason Wood and MinhDuc Nguyen; daughter in law Ruby Do; grandchildren, Ethan Wood, Ava Wood, Kallista Nguyen, Kashue Nguyen, Karter Nguyen, Nathan Nguyen, and Ryan Nguyen.
Visitation at Kutis Affton Chapel 10151 Gravois Rd. 63123 on Friday, September 18, 2020 from 4-8 pm. Funeral service on Saturday at 9:00 am. Interment at Resurrection Cemetery.