Short Hair Detention Author Channy Chhi Laux is Today’s Honoree

About The Book:

When the Communist-aligned Khmer Rouge asserted their regime over Cambodia in 1975, they enacted a country-wide genocide that ended in the deaths of nearly two million people. For four years, Channy Chhi Laux lived under that terrifying rule.

Towards the fall of this regime, Laux immigrated to the United States as a refugee. Now Laux shares a harrowing tale of survival in “Short Hair Detention: Memoir of a Thirteen-Year-Old Girl Surviving the Cambodian Genocide.”

“Short Hair Detention” chronicles Laux’s experiences as a survivor of the Khmer Rouge. Complete with emotional narrative from the perspective of a young teenage girl, Laux candidly discusses her life that was dictated by fear throughout the four years she endured the Cambodian genocide.

She sheds light on the emotional toils she suffered—which stemmed from starvation and the separation from her parents—and eventually came to the United States as a refugee. Laux would go on to earn multiple degrees before launching a 30-year career as a software and systems engineer. A story of redemption, Laux’s memoir demonstrates her unwavering perseverance, faith in God, courage to move past her pain and hope that she would be reunited with her family.

“Short Hair Detention shows that an unfortunate beginning does not determine the end of one’s story,” Laux said. “Four years of living in darkness and suffering did not define the remainder of my life. What kept me sane was the love that I had for my mother, and the empowerment that they cannot control me 100%, I am free to think.”

About The Author:

Channy Laux is a survivor of the Khmer Rouge genocide in Cambodia. She was thirteen-years-old when the Khmer Rouge took over the country in 1975. From 1975 to 1979, Channy endured starvation, horrendous working conditions, sickness and repeated separations from her family.

In June of 1979, Channy arrived in Lincoln Nebraska as a refugee. After four years of no school and not knowing a word of English, she attended Lincoln High School; went on to earn BS degrees in Computer Science and Mathematics from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and a Master of Science in Applied Mathematics from Santa Clara University. Channy worked in Silicon Valley as an engineer in the Aerospace and Biotech industries for 30 years.

As a strong supporter for women in engineering, Channy has been a board member of INCOSE (International Council on Systems Engineering) and held office as president of INCOSE Bay Area Chapter.

Channy is married to her college sweetheart, they have two children Natasha and Richard. Channy is living in Fremont CA with her husband Kent Laux. She is passionate about food, cooking, dining, and entertaining friends. She is an entrepreneur and owner of Apsara Foods, manufacturing Cambodian food products here in the USA.

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