Minh Quyen
Minh Quyen was born in northern Vietnam near the Laos border. Her father was an esteemed officer in the NVA during the American War and later in the Sino-Vietnamese Conflict. Due to his fluency in English, he raised his family in a bilingual home as much as possible. By the mid 80s her father’s military accomplishments for the ‘People’ had been forgotten, and the economic failures of the country had disillusioned the man’s beliefs in communism. Placing his family at the mercy of his former enemy, 14 year old Minh and her family immigrated to the United States – settling in Seattle.

Minh Quyen assimilated quickly, no doubt from her upbringing in English. After completing High School, in an effort to demonstrate her own accomplishments to her father and to pay for college, she enlisted in the army. A decision she would later regret as she would find herself marooned in Eastern Europe.

Although she wanted to join the intelligence community, Quyen had to settle for her second choice of military police. Stationed first in Panama and later with the 1st Infantry Division, she considers this time in her life the most uneventful.  After nearly completing the duration of her contract Quyen began shifting her sights from the military back to college.

Her honorary discharge was canceled when the West German Army moved to reunify with the East. Within a few weeks she found herself pulling security at checkpoints, newly assigned to the 8th Mechanized Division. She wasn’t a front line soldier but experienced as much of the horrors as anyone else. Refugees, Spetsnaz raids, chemical and artillery attacks, and later banditry and marauders were all common dealings for her unit. After being reprimanded for randomly abusing EPWs, Quyen was given proper training by interrogators on how to correctly “prep” subjects prior to being questioned.

In early 1999 due to manpower shortages in combat units, her MP platoon was stood down and the soldiers sent as reinforcements to various units. Quyen was absorbed into the remnants of the 8th Mech’s combat engineer brigade. Given a crash course in demolitions and fortification construction, she was expected to learn much of her trade “on the job” during combat.

In 2000, her division was part of the last great NATO offensive into Poland. After the Pact counter attack left her on her own, she found refuge serving in a small town's militia.