On April 30th, 1975, all of the American radio stations in and around Saigon began simultaneously playing White Christmas and the signal to begin the evacuation of Saigon was thus communicated.   The U.S. Embassy and numerous small ports along the coastline became unthinkably chaotic, as everyone scrambled to escape the approaching North Vietnamese forces (PAVN) and the horrors that awaited anyone unfortunate enough to have been left behind. 

    USS Duluth LPD-6 was part of a task group of 18 U.S. ships assembled offshore, for the purpose of evacuating as many refugees to safety as possible.   The name that had been given to the evacuation mission was "Operation Frequent Wind."   USS Duluth, though configured to transport 800 Marines, evacuated over 2,000 refugees to safety; finding places for people in every nook & cranny of the ship.

    Recently, we were very fortunate to have reconnected with one of those families who evacuated to safety aboard USS Duluth, eventually making their way to America and a new life.   Chinh Pham, who was only 10 years old at the time of the evacuation, has written the story of his family's journey, along with input from his parents and siblings, which he has called "Journey to America."   Clicking on the link below, will take you to that historic story, as written by the Pham family.  It is presented in three (3) parts:  

    (1)  The foreword provides historic information to provide context of the last couple of days, in an effort to explain why people would leave the home they have known all of their lives and embark on a journey filled with danger and venture out in the ocean, seeking a new life in a strange, unknown place.

    (2)  The Journey to America story, written by Chinh Pham, with contribution by his parents and siblings

    (3)  An Epilogue, which provides information about what everyone in the family went on to achieve after arriving in America

    If you prefer, you can skip the historic background info in the foreword and go right to the Pham family Journey to America, which begins on page 11.

    Below, is a link to photographs taken aboard USS Duluth LPD-6 during Operation Frequent Wind in April 1975.   Except for the fleet deployment map, the photos are provided courtesy of USS Duluth shipmate Bob Cort, with our sincere appreciation.   These photos are presented randomly, in no particular order.