A Vietnam War Love Affair, a Baby, and 48 Years Later, a Reunion
Voice of America
Huỳnh Thị Chút (right) takes care of Gary Wittig who was bedridden after a fall triggered a heart attack. They reunited in Atlanta, Georgia, 48 years after they first met in Đà Nẵng during the height of Vietnam War.
RIVERDALE, GEORGIA —
The first time Huỳnh Thị Chút set foot in the United States, she came to see Gary Wittig, the man she met in Danang during the height of the Vietnam War.
The daughter that Chút had with Wittig, Nguyễn Thị Kim Nga, flew from her Nebraska home of 17 years to meet her father’s family in a suburb of Atlanta, in the southeastern U.S. state of Georgia. With a newfound cousin, Nga met her mother at Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson international airport.
After a drive to the suburbs, Chút reunited with Wittig, now frail and on oxygen, 48 years after they parted.
The reunion was “completely amazing,” said Christine Kimmey, Wittig’s niece who joined Nga at the airport.
“She (Chut) placed her hands on him and started massaging his lung, massaging his arms. They just sat there and smiled,” said Kimmey, who added she couldn’t describe the excitement and joy of the Oct. 3 event.
“It’s the best thing that could ever happen to my uncle,” she said.
Wittig and Chút still could not speak each other’s languages. The other unchanged element of their relationship: Chút’s smile remained the same, according to Wittig, who died Nov. 24, hours after his extended, blended family gathered for Thanksgiving.
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