Friday, July 28, 2006
Baby Hieu: a report by Jim Brennan in Hanoi
Some of our volunteers from recent missions will remember little Hieu and his lovely parents who travelled with us during our two most recent Medical Missions. Hieu received multiple surgeries (in 2004 and 2005) for a severe cleft lip and concurrent cleft palate. I recently had an opportunity to visit Hieu at his family's home in a remote area in the tea-producing heart of Thai Nguyen Province. The promised 3-hour journey took a lot longer when we discovered that our guide to Hieu's house hadn't been there for sixteen years! Eventually we found the place, and spent an enjoyable afternoon with the extended family. We met Hieu's older brother The, who was the recipient of major heart surgery a few years ago. I'm happy to report that both boys are now healthy and happy.
Hieu is now talking and singing, and running around like a wind-up toy. It was great to hear his happy laughter in between songs. He will need to be seen again by our team, either in November or next March, to assess the need for further touch-up work due to the severity of his original condition. He is seen pictured here alone, and with his brother The and their cousin. I've also included a few photos of the beautiful scenery surrounding their very modest home.