In Loving Memory of
Pacific Song Vang (Ntxhoo Vaj)
May 5, 1954 - September 29, 2019
Au Vajtswv Yawmsaub,
koj yog kuv lub chaw vam,
koj yog kuv lub chaw tso siab txij thaum yau los.
Txij thaum yug kuv los
kuv yeej vam koj,
koj yog tus uas coj kuv tawm hauv niam lub plab los.
Kuv yeej qhuas koj tsis tu ncua li.
Ntawv Nkauj 71:5
Pacific Song Vang (Ntxhoo Vaj) was born on May 5, 1954, in the village of Dong Dan, Xieng Khouang province, Laos to Nao Heu (Nom Hawj Vaj) and Yer Vu (Ntxawm Vwj). He was the oldest of four children and had two brothers, Tong and Meng, and one sister, Sia. Meng passed away two years ago. Song also had many half-brothers, Kong Pheng, Vam Long, Der and half-sisters Xue, Yer, and Mai See.
Song’s father’s family was part of the heroic Royal Lao Army (RLA) and the American-trained “Special Guerrilla Unit” (SGU) who heavily sacrificed defending Laos from the Communist People’s Army of Vietnam, and promoting freedom and democracy in Indochina and Southeast Asia during the 1950s and 60s. Song’s father, Nao Heu, served two wars in Laos, that of the French and later the “American War”. Nao Heu’s two oldest sons: Capt. Vang Bee, was a helicopter pilot and Lt. Vang Ching was a T-28 pilot. Nao Heu - a battalion commander - and Lt. Vang Ching, were both lost in the fighting fronts in 1964 and 1972, respectively. Capt. Vang Bee survived and resettled in Fresno, California where he passed away in the mid-1980s.
Song attended high school in Nam Hia, Sayaburi province, Laos and enlisted as a soldier in his late teens. Song received the rank of warrant officer while also studying English at Phone Kheng, a Royal Lao Army military school, from 1972-73 in Vientiane and was preparing to enter T-28 pilot training in Thailand. He lived all over northern Laos but mainly resided in Long Cheng and Vientiane. After the communists took over Laos in 1975, he fled to Nam Phong and Ban Vinai Refugee Camps in Thailand. He arrived in the United States in 1976 and resettled in Nevada and then moved to Santa Ana/Garden Grove (Orange County), California.
In 1980, Song moved to Chicago, Illinois and met Pa Nhia Yang (Paj Nyiag Yaj). In 1983, the couple married and later moved to Des Moines, Iowa to be closer to Song’s family. Song and Pa Nhia have four children: Fueche (Fwj Chim), Seashia (Xis Siab), Jiear (Ntsa Iab), and Naipong (Nai Phoo). Song was born a Christian and has been a lifelong member of the Hmong Christian and Missionary Alliance (C&MA) in Des Moines. Song also encouraged his children to focus on school, participate in extracurricular activities, and pursue higher education. All his children graduated from university.
Song was very creative and imaginative. In 1999, Song changed his name to Pacific after the Pacific Ocean. He believed Pacific better represented him because the Pacific Ocean is the largest and deepest ocean and connects Asia to the United States. Song was a talented painter and loved painting beautiful scenes depicting the war in Laos. He was also skillful in repairing houses and fixing cars for his wife and children. Song loved singing, dancing, and learning about different cultures. His children inherited his love for art, music, and cultures. Song also had many hobbies including fishing, camping, hunting, watching football and NASCAR, driving, traveling, and doing word puzzles. Song’s favorite hobby was capturing memories of his family with video and photo cameras.
Song could be very serious and would take leadership roles of the family when necessary. However, Song will be remembered for his charismatic, fun-loving, and carefree attitude. He loved riding his motorcycle in California and traveling with his family in the Mid-West. Song will be greatly missed by all, but his memories will live on.
He is survived by his wife of 36 years, Pa Nhia Yang, four children: Fueche Vang, Seashia Vang, Jiear (Vang) Rueschhoff, and Naipong Vang, and granddaughter Jemma Kashia and son-in-law Jason Rueschhoff, his mother, Yer Vu, brother Tong Vang, sister Sia Vang.