His name is Tua Tuang. I knew him as Khen. He was a classmate, brother, and friend in the cohort 3 MAGDJ (Masters in global development and justice) program at Multnomah University. He was an international student from Myanmar. He was humble, kind, soft-spoken, passionate about helping children, a singer, a follower of Jesus, a husband, and a father. He was very involved with his church, Zomi Bethel, and even completed a research project that demonstrated challenges that members of Zomi Bethel Church are facing as refugees after eight months and alternatives for a better life.
We worked on a group project together. I learned what a hard worker he was. English was not his first language, yet he was dedicated and determined to finish classes well. I admired his courage to come to the states to further his education to return to his home country to serve others and share the love of Jesus.
Even though I told him I was not a very good writer/editor ( I had been out of school for a while) he still trusted me to help edit his papers.
(our class cohort and families at the end of the first year picnic)
Our last conversation was about the TV show Expedition Unknown that showed an episode on Myanmar. We discussed internships and what he was looking forward to learning. He was eager to intern at APANO and learn more about policy advocacy.
Unfortunately, Khen, his friend Peter, his wife and child were involved in a car accident. Only his wife and child survived. His family were denied visas to attend his funeral and due to complaints, his family made it to his funeral two days ago.
Our cohort has set up a gofundme page. I’m so thankful so many people are willing to help out!
I’m reminded that even though many of us are sad to hear the news about the accident, Khen is home with Jesus and we will meet again. Jesus conquered death once and for all and there is hope in that. He will be missed and his life will be celebrated.
Revelation 21:4 (NIV)
“He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”