top of page
< Back

Suni Lee and an epochal moment for the Hmong in America

The Hmong people arrived in the US in the '70s and '80s; the largest share is in Wisconsin and Minnesota. During the Vietnam War, Hmong soldiers were recruited by the CIA. Thousands of Hmong died and others forced to flee when the US withdrew from Vietnam and essentially abandoned the ethnic group. Hmong General Vang Pao was recruited to enlist his people to fight against the Laotian and North Vietnamese military. The Hmong fought and suffered losses of 30,000 to 40,000 of their people. Lee's historic performance Thursday was an epochal moment for the Hmong people in America. "She made all of us proud," said Lee Pao Xiong, director of the Center for Hmong Studies at Concordia University in St. Paul. "What's really important is you have a daughter of a refugee representing the United States of America at the Olympics. She not only made the Hmong people proud but I think the United States of America should be proud of her accomplishment as well."

source url:

bottom of page