When the Partnership for Public Service honored her with a Service to America medal, the woman born in Vietnam had this to say about the debt she owed to her new country:
"This land is a paradise not because of its beauty or richness but because of its people, the compassionate, generous Americans who took my family and me in, 32 years ago, and healed our souls, who restore my faith in humanity, and who inspire me to public service. There’s a special group of people that I’m especially indebted to and I would like to dedicate this medal to them. They are the 58,000 Americans whose names are on the wall of the Vietnam War Memorial and the 260,000 South Vietnamese soldiers who died in that war in order for people like me to earn a second chance to freedom. May God bless all of those who are willing to die for freedom—especially those who are willing to die for the freedom of others. Thank you."