Fundraising exceeded goal to build a statue for Minnesota Hmong-Lao Veterans Memorial

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(SHB) — A fundraising held in St. Paul, Minnesota to raise the remaining $30,000 to build a statue for the Minnesota Hmong-Lao Veterans Memorial at the Minnesota State Capitol.
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a0Click here to watch Suab Hmong News, Qu Kue, News Correspondent for Suab Hmong News, exclusive covered the Minnesota Hmong-Lao Veterans Memorial fundraising.

Yia Michael Thao, Treasurer for the Minnesota Hmong-Lao Veterans Memorial Committee, said “Today, with all the sponsors and individuals’ donations, we raised $64,000.00. Our goal was $30,000.00 to get the total to $150,000.00 to match with the Minnesota State of $350,000.00 to build the statue.”

Many of the Hmong Representatives included Senator Foung Hawj participated the fundraising event.

Watch Suab Hmong News exclusive coverage for more detail information.

Below are the mission and history of the Minnesota Hmong-Lao Veterans Memorial Committee taken from http://www.hmonglaomemorial.org:

Our Mission
Our mission is to build the Minnesota Hmong-Lao Veterans Commemorative Memorial to honor military personnel and citizens who served in the “Secret War” in Laos and to hlep ensure that they are not forgotten, as well as to provide education to the younger generations.

The Commemorative Memorial will be a permanent testament to the enduring human spirit that survives and continues to move humanity forward.

Our History
The Minnesota Hmong-Lao Veteran Statue Committee was established after successfully organizing a memorial vigil on the Minnesota State Capitol grounds in 2000. The purpose of the vigil was to honor veterans who served during the “Secret War” in Laos from 1960 to 1975. The memorial vigil brought hundreds of participants to the site and it remains an honored annual community event.

The idea of placing a statue on the Capitol grounds followed in 2004 the Hmong Veterans Statue Bill was introduced to the Minnesota State Legislature by Representative Cy Thao and Senator Steve Murphy. The Minnesota State Legislature passed the bill and the memorial vigil group put together a planning committee to develop a strategic plan. The planning committee consists of members from the community, representatives from four veteran organizations (Lao-Hmong American Coalition of Minnesota, Minnesota Lao Veterans Association Inc., SGU Veterans and Families of USA, Inc., and the United Royal Lao Armed Forces & SGU.

In May 2007, the planning committee worked with the State Capitol Architectural Area Planning Board to designate a site on the State Capitol grounds for the war memorial and to bid for the architectural design. Now with the site allocated and the design obtained, the next phase is to raise funds to build the Minnesota Hmong-Lao Veterans Commemorative Memorial.

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