Buth Choun, Member of Parliament

Told by his daughter, Buth Chan Mearadey My father, who was born in 1920, was a real patriot and very active in politics. He was a representative in the National Assembly for two terms, from 1959 to 1967, and was involved in the coup to depose King Sihanouk in 1970. He had a lot of […]

Pon Arun, Provincial Court Clerk

Told by his daughter, Arun Cheat Ponnary My father Pon Arun fell in love with my mother at first sight. She was very beautiful and a performer of Basak [a traditional dance]. My father was the son of an Ouknha [a title given to a rich person]. My grandmother, however, didn’t like my mother and constantly tried to find ways […]

Ing Sopheak, Court Clerk

When he was 18 years old, my husband was ordained a monk. He passed his baccalaureate examination in the Pali language. Chuon Nat, the head of his monastery, ordered him to teach other monks. But Sopheak was facing financial problems, so he quit and took the entrance exam to work as a trial court clerk. […]

Meng Chheng, Airport Administrator

I was very lucky to have survived the Khmer Rouge regime. My mother and five of the eight children in our family died, but I lived by lying to the Angkar, saying I was a cyclo [pedicab] driver. My original name was Meng Chheng. It is a Chinese name, which made finding work very difficult. […]

Taing Hang Meng, Forester

My father was the chief of forest and wild animal preservation at the Ministry of Agriculture. In 1973, the Ministry assigned him to monitor along the Koh Kong coastline. He decided to move his family to Koh Kong after the Khmer New Year of 1975, but everything changed on April 17. When the Khmer Rouge […]

Um Sboang, Cooperative Chief

Among our family’s seven children, Sboang was the luckiest; he had the highest position. He was a clever student and fluent in French. During the Sihanouk regime, he passed a civil service exam and became a cooperative chief in Prey Veng. He supervised the agricultural system for the whole province. Sboang loved me a lot. […]

Sam Sin Thai, Agricultural Sector Chief

Thai was a smart man. Before 1970, he studied at the agricultural school in Kampong Cham Province. He rented a house there and fell in love with Huot Phannary, the landlord’s daughter. We call her Nary. She is a well behaved and educated woman who taught sports. When King Sihanouk visited our province, Nary greeted […]

Kong Chamroeun, Postal Worker

I moved to Phnom Penh from Kandal Province so I could attend high school, but after I completed the 5th grade [the equivalent of 7th grade in the west] I took an entrance exam for the postal service. I passed and began working at the post office in 1961. I fell in love with Say Ngim when she […]

Srey Yar, Brigadier General

I still remember my father’s words: “I am a soldier, and will not flee the country. If I die, I want to die in Cambodia.” He said this on April 15, 1975 when my mother told him to escape. He probably knew he would be killed, but decided to stay in Phnom Penh anyway. Before […]

Thong Phoeun, Colonel

Phoeun first saw me one evening when I was walking to the river to have a bath. He kept watching me and followed me whenever I went to the market. He came to my parents to ask for my hand in marriage. My father didn’t agree at first because he hadn’t brought any elderly people […]