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Mother of Vietnamese martyr fulfills wish to visit son’s grave after 35 years

Tuesday, July 30, 2019, 17:21 GMT+7
Mother of Vietnamese martyr fulfills wish to visit son’s grave after 35 years
Hoang Thi Te sits by the grave of her son in the northern Vietnamese province of Ha Giang on July 26, 2019. Photo: Nguyen Duy Tuan

A 93-year-old Vietnamese woman was finally able to visit the grave of her son for the first time last week, 35 years after the soldier died fighting for his country.

Hoang Thi Te has had only one wish in her life - traveling nearly 120 kilometers from her home in the northern province of Tuyen Quang to a cemetery in Vi Xuyen District in Ha Giang Province, where her fallen son, Tran Van Hanh, was laid to rest.

Hanh, who was Te’s third child, sacrificed his life during the Vi Xuyen battle in July 1984, as he and other Vietnamese soldiers were protecting the country’s independence, sovereignty, and territorial integrity along the northern border.

Te knew his son died for the country and where he was buried, but it took her 3.5 decades to be able to visit his grave on Friday.

Hoang Thi Te is pictured at her home in northern Tuyen Quang Province. Photo: Vu Tuan / Tuoi Tre

Hoang Thi Te is pictured at her home in northern Tuyen Quang Province. Photo: Vu Tuan / Tuoi Tre

Tran Duc Man, Hanh’s older brother, told Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper he and other family members have been taking care of the grave on a yearly basis but they had decided not to take their mother to the cemetery.

“We were afraid she would be overcome with emotion,” Man explained.

The elderly woman loves and misses her late son very much, but she never said it out loud, according to Man.

“She would not sleep on Hanh’s death anniversary and the country’s annual remembrance day [July 27],” he stated.

Hoang Thi Te walks with her cane at the cemetery in the photo supplied by the family.

Hoang Thi Te walks with her cane at the cemetery in this photo supplied by the family.

“We often saw her sit alone in front of the house and cry on these nights.”

Man said the family decided to accompany their 93-year-old mother all the way to Vi Xuyen after she had told them earlier this month that she wanted to visit Hanh’s grave at least once in her lifetime.

“I am satisfied,” Te told her family following the trip.

The touching photo of Te walking with her cane at the cemetery has captured a lot of attention on social media.

Many people have expressed their sympathy and gratitude to all the fallen heroes who had sacrificed their lives for Vietnam.

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