The Ly family attending a function.
Mr Ly escaped from Vietnam in 1980, but it was 10 long years before his family could join him.
He worked long hours at the Ford factory to buy a home, while Mrs Ly struggled by herself in Vietnam with four children, even being imprisoned for a time. Their eldest daughter also attempted to escape but was lost at sea.
Danh, their youngest child, began experiencing memory problems in 2001 and became very difficult to live with, even aggressive. Their first doctor told them that they were merely spoiling him! Eventually he was diagnosed with a mental illness and received medication, which at least allows him to sleep at night.
Life with Danh is hard for Mr and Mrs Ly, who are in their 70s. Despite their supportive family, they believe there is less fear and stigma in Australia than in Vietnam. They would advise others: ‘Seek medical treatment and accept responsibility for your child. There are many good organisations and groups that can help you. This country is good soil for people to settle.’