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IAS Thursdays: Gayle Morrison Reads From “Hog’s Exit: Jerry Daniels, the Hmong, and the CIA”

Gayle Morrison discusses her latest work, Hog’s Exit: Jerry Daniels, the Hmong, and the CIA

Available for download as audio or video.

Question and Answer Session

Available for download as audio or video.

An extraordinary life, death, and burial: Jerry “Hog” Daniels died in Bangkok under questionable circumstances. He had been a CIA case officer to General Vang Pao during the “secret war” in Laos, and later was responsible for resettling Hmong war refugees to the U.S. In her latest work, author and former refugee services worker, Gayle L. Morrison, uses oral history and the framework of Daniels’ three-day Hmong funeral ceremony in Missoula, Montana, to examine the life of “one of the shining lights” of the Vietnam War era.
This event took place Thursday, October 3, at 4:00 pm in 125 Nolte.
This presentation is part of the Hmong Across Borders Conference, October 4-5, 2013.
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This book examines the unique personality and reported death of a man who was a pivotal agent in U.S./Hmong history.

The American Embassy in Bangkok had reported the accidental death of Jerry “Hog” Daniels by carbon monoxide poisoning. As a former CIA case officer to legendary Hmong leader General Vang Pao during the “secret war” in Laos, Jerry Daniels was experienced, smart, and careful. Those who knew him well said he wasn’t the type to die as reported. Raising even more doubts, his casket was “Permanently Sealed” by the U.S. State Department before being shipped home to Missoula, Montana, where he was honored with a three-day funeral ceremony organized by his former comrades-in-arms, the Hmong hilltribe warriors from Laos.

Friends and family share their memories of Daniels growing up in Montana, cheating death in Laos, and carousing in Thailand. First-person accounts from Americans and Hmong, ranchers and refugees, State Department officials and smokejumpers capture both human and historical stories about the life of this dedicated and irreverent individual and offer speculation on the unsettling circumstances of his death. Equally important, Hog’s Exit is the first complete account in English to document the drama and beauty of the Hmong funeral process.  Hog’s Exit provides a fascinating view of a man and the two very different cultures in which he lived.

Hmong Across Borders Conference October 4-5
Conference Overview

Conference: Hmong Across the Borders
The Consortium for Hmong Studies between the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities and the University of Wisconsin-Madison hosts their second conference, “Hmong Across the Borders” October 4-5, 2013 at the U of M, with a Thursdays at Four discussion by one of the keynote conference presenters.  The interdisciplinary, international conference will focus on current, innovative research on the Hmong across different intellectual and national boundaries around the world.

Gayle Morrison Biography
Gayle Morrison
Gayle L. Morrison has worked with the Hmong community in education, refugee services, private enterprise, and as an oral historian for 35 years. Her first book, Sky Is Falling, uses oral history to document the air evacuation of the Hmong from Long Cheng, Laos, in May 1975.  Her current book, Hog’s Exit: Jerry Daniels, the Hmong, and the CIA, uses oral history to explore Daniels’ mysterious death  in Thailand and to document the events of his traditional Hmong funeral ceremony. Jerry Daniels was General Vang Pao’s CIA advisor in Laos.

Ms. Morrison’s work with eye-witness oral history is a creative approach to documenting Hmong history and culture. She has a BA in Sociology and a MA in Psychology.

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Registration for the conference is open.
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* Please note – much of the conference will take place in Cowles Auditorium, Humphrey School of Public Affairs.

 

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