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American Journalist Recalled Cambodian Refugees Escaping War in 1979

Greg Barron was a young American journalist among those who went to Thai-Cambodia border camps to capture the despair of Cambodian refugees escaping the Khmer Rouge atrocities in November, 1979. During his two weeks visiting several refugee camps in Thailand and Cambodia, Barron witnessed a “horrifying” experience of Cambodian people –many looked as skinny as skeleton and suffered severe coughing from lung disease –who sought refuges in the first world countries. Upon his return, he produced a radio documentary program called the “Trampled Grass” telling the stories of Cambodian refugees to the American people via the Minnesota Public Radio. Nearly 40 years later Barron recently met several Cambodians in Minnesota who were in the camps at the time he was there. He told VOA Khmer that this has led him to produce a feature radio documentary “Follow the Moon” in which three former Cambodian refugees recalled their experience under the Khmer Rouge regime. The documentary will debut publicly through Minnesota Public Radio and American Public Media and via Greg Barron's website on April 17,2017.
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A Cambodian family gathered under a tarp in Sa Keo province, Thailand, in November, 1979.
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A Cambodian family gathered under a tarp in Sa Keo province, Thailand, in November, 1979.

Food was being unloaded in one refugee camp located in Thailand, in November, 1979.
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Food was being unloaded in one refugee camp located in Thailand, in November, 1979.

Greg Barron in Mak Mun refugee camp in Thailand, in November, 1979.
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Greg Barron in Mak Mun refugee camp in Thailand, in November, 1979.

An aid worker with a starving child in Nong Samet refugee camp in Thailand, in November, 1979.
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An aid worker with a starving child in Nong Samet refugee camp in Thailand, in November, 1979.

Cambodian refugees in Sa Keo, Thailand, in November, 1979.
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Cambodian refugees in Sa Keo, Thailand, in November, 1979.

Soldiers of Khmer Serai insurgent group at Cambodian camp known as old camp in Cambodia, in November, 1979.
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Soldiers of Khmer Serai insurgent group at Cambodian camp known as old camp in Cambodia, in November, 1979.

Khmer Serai insurgent leaders at Cambodian camp known as old camp in Cambodia, in November, 1979.
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Khmer Serai insurgent leaders at Cambodian camp known as old camp in Cambodia, in November, 1979.

Khmer Serai insurgent leaders at Cambodian camp known as old camp in Cambodia, in November, 1979.
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Khmer Serai insurgent leaders at Cambodian camp known as old camp in Cambodia, in November, 1979.

Khmer Serai insurgent leaders at Cambodian camp known as old camp in Cambodia, in November, 1979.
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Khmer Serai insurgent leaders at Cambodian camp known as old camp in Cambodia, in November, 1979.

Greg Barron in Sa Keo refugee camp in Thailand, in November, 1979.
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Greg Barron in Sa Keo refugee camp in Thailand, in November, 1979.

Greg Barron donated blood at one refugee camp in Thailand, in November, 1979.
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Greg Barron donated blood at one refugee camp in Thailand, in November, 1979.

Greg Barron near Thai-Cambodia border in November, 1979.
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Greg Barron near Thai-Cambodia border in November, 1979.

 Greg Barron with his Trampled Grass team members, Craig and Mike, and a Cambodian guide, in Thailand, in November, 1979.
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 Greg Barron with his Trampled Grass team members, Craig and Mike, and a Cambodian guide, in Thailand, in November, 1979.

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