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18-November-2014
18-November-2014

Photographs supplied by Diane Watson

The monument is a memorial for those who lost their lives fleeing Vietnam on boats after the fall of Saigon and the end of the Vietnam War.

In the last days before the fall of Saigon in 1975 to the communists, attempts were made to evacuate as many people as possible out of the country. Some of the most iconic images from the Vietnam War era are of Vietnamese people trying desperately to get on to the last US helicopters leaving Saigon. The Americans and Australians did try to get as many people as possible out, but many were left behind.

Those who were not lucky enough to have been officially transported out of the country now looked to other ways of escaping the new communist regime. For the next few years Vietnamese people began leaving the country any way they could. In desperation thousands of families climbed aboard flimsy, overcrowded boats and began to make their way to other countries. They became known as the 'boat people'. It sometimes took months for them to reach their destination and many spoke of attacks by pirates in the open ocean. A lot of the boats were not seaworthy and did not make it. It is not known how many of them capsized and were lost at sea.

Over 50 boats managed to make it all the way to Australia's northern shoreline in April 1976 and around 2000 people from those boats claimed refugee status in Australia and asked for asylum.

 

Location

Address:Rosemary & Abelia Streets, Kev Hooper Memorial Park, Inala, 4077
State:QLD
Area:Foreign
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -27.590269
Long: 152.976626
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Details

Monument Type:Monument
Monument Theme:Conflict
Sub-Theme:Vietnam

Dedication

Actual Monument Dedication Date:Saturday 14th May, 2011
Front Inscription

FREEDOM PLACE
(plaque)
The Vietnamese Community in Australia
QUEENSLAND CHAPTER 
IN MEMORY 
HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF VIETNAMESE 
BOAT PEOPLE PERISHED AT SEA ON THEIR JOURNEY
SEEKING FREEDOM 1975 - 1995


IN GRATITUDE
IN THE HOUR OF THEIR GREATEST NEED
YOU WERE THERE 
WE THANK YOU AUSTRALIA 

There is no greater sorrow than the loss of one's native land 
                                           Euripides- MEDEA  
 

Source: MA
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au
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