Memory of Khmer Rouge Survivors is a reminder of our moral obligations

Story of Voeung Vorn, Soldier of the Khmer Republic (1970-75); Told by Mrs. Sory, his wife. Documentation Center of Cambodia Archives

My husband Vorn had skin the color of a soybean. He was gentle, hardworking, and very likable. We were married when I was 16. About a month later, the village and sub-district authorities came to persuade Vorn to join Lon Nol’s army. He didn’t want to, but had little choice. He served in many battles

At the beginning of 1975, my husband was ordered to go to a village on the outskirts of Phnom Penh, where he was wounded in the thigh. When his colleagues gave me this news, I took a helicopter from Takeo Province to care for him. I cried when I first saw his injuries. He couldn’t stop bleeding and there were worms in his wound. The doctors tried to help him, but he was unable to walk.

I refused to leave him when the Khmer Rouge began evacuating people from Phnom Penh. When they forced us to leave the hospital, I put Vorn in a cart and tied him to it with a krama so he wouldn’t fall out. I was nearly ready to give birth and my belly was very big, so it was difficult for me to travel.

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