… by way of introduction …
every American has heard of the Vietnam War. What many Americans do not
know is that this war had messily spilled over into the neighboring
countries of Vietnam. Quiet mountain villages of Laos were bombed. Young
Laotian boys barely taller than the firearms they carried were enlisted by
the C.I.A. to fight the communists. This was the Silent War; the war in
Laos that by official U.S. declaration, did not exist. Refugees fleeing the
communists were crammed into filthy barbed-wire camps in Thailand.
were bursting with the sick, the hungry, the dying, and the hopeless. Lois
Callaway was an American missionary in Thailand at that time. Yoon
Choy Saechao was a young village boy in Laos
whose life was forever changed by the Silent War. It was in the stench of
the camp that their lives intersected, and Yoon Choy found salvation.
privileged to sit and listen to both their stories. History is best heard
from those who were there. These two stories have become a singular story
of crossing cultures and survival. It is as much a tribute to Lois Callaway
as to the Mien people like Yoon Choy, whom she loved and served. One person
with a heart inclined toward the will of God, can effect change. Lois
Callaway showed me that this can be true.
NADINE ELKERTON arrived in this world in a simple sod home in Adena, Morgan County, Colorado on November 24, 1921.
She distinguished herself in Fort Morgan, Colorado High School and in that
city in journalism and anticipated a career in that field. She was active
in her church youth group and there felt the call of the Lord on her life
for foreign mission service. She thus entered Phillips University in Enid,
Oklahoma. There she met C.W. Callaway. After a 2-year courtship they
married in Enid on May 28. 1942. They ministered in Glencoe, Oklahoma. While
continuing studies at Cincinnati, Ohio Bible Seminary they ministered to
Syria and Bethel Christian Churches near Orleans, Indiana.
first went abroad in Dec. 1946 for a year's study in missionary medicine
and Burmese in London, England. After a frustrating 6 months of trying in
vain to extend their visas in Burma they served a year in Kunming, Yunnan,
Western China. Forced from China by the communist takeover they went on to
Thailand where they arrived on October 18, 1949. Most events in this book occurred
in Thailand. Throughout their ministry they have been supported by several
local congregations of Christian Churches and Churches of Christ.
& Lois have 2 sons born in America, one daughter born in China, and a
son and daughter born in Thailand. Lois died in an automobile accident near
Napa, California on September 5, 1996.