The Digital Journalist
© Philip Jones Griffiths / Magnum / VIETNAM at PEACE / Trolley Books
Le Thi Lien lived with her adoptive mother, Tran Thi Sinh, in a shop house in Cholon. Her mother died when she was three months old and she has lived with Sinh ever since. Her father was an RMK engineer in Saigon who returned to the U.S. in 1970. After her mother died the father at first made a financial contribution to help feed baby Lien but then Sinh got a letter with no return address on it from the father's wife in the U.S. saying, "Don't ever try to contact my husband again. " Now all that Lien has is an old photograph of her father and mother. Lien went to the school opposite their stationery shop and excelled at athletics and gymnastics. She has won a gold medal for shot putting. She and the family were hoping to go to the United States.