NOAA's Deepwater Horizon Oil Disaster Oral History documents the experience of people living in Gulf of Mexico oil-spill-affected fishing communities. The oral history data complements other social and economic data about the spill collected by NOAA and other governmental agencies and non-governmental organizations.
Angel Truong Phan
Khang V. Dang is a Vietnamese-American shrimper living in Biloxi, Mississippi. Mr. Khang V. Dang was born April 20, 1954, one of eleven children, in the port city of Vung Tau in southern Vietnam. Mr. Dang’s parents originated from the Go Cong district in the Mekong Delta region. He learned fishing and net making from his father and grandfather; his mother cooked and baked and sold her goods, along with fish and shrimp, in the market. Mr. Dang joined the Army of the Republic of Vietnam in 1971, serving as security for his home area of Vung Tau until 1975. Mr. Dang served as captain when he, his wife, and their five young children escaped Vietnam, along with others (sixty-two in all), on their boat in 1981. More of his family escaped after he left. After spending a year and a half in Pulau Bidong, Malaysia (landing in January 1982), they were transported to Galang, Indonesia, before landing in San Diego, California, in 1983. In 1986, Mr. Dang and his family relocated to Biloxi where he began shrimping the Gulf waters.
Scope and Content Note:
He discusses family from Vung Tau, Vietnam; learning to fish from father; served as local security during Vietnam War; parents from battleground of Go Cong; war disrupted education; fishing for a living; difficulties after Communist takeover (father?s imprisonment); comparison of fishing in Vietnam versus US; species caught and lack of regulation there; family?s decision to escape; navigating boat to Pulau Bidong, Malaysia; time in Galang, Indonesia learning English and American ways; sponsored by cousin to US (San Diego then to Biloxi); fishing in Biloxi; love of fishing and working hard; owns freezer boats Sea Lion V and Sea Dolphin on Back Bay; impact of BP oil spill and lack of shrimp; working laying boom and cleanup for BP one month.
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