Jungle people: 40 years ago thought dead | Bangkok Post: learning

Learning > Learning From News (เรียนภาษาอังกฤษจาก ข่าวบางกอกโพสต์)

Jungle people: 40 years ago thought dead

Level switch:
  1. Advanced
- +

Father & baby son last seen in 1973 running into jungle after bomb exploded in home killing family during Vietnam War. 

A handout photo made available by Thanhnien online shows Ho Van Lang (purple shirt), and his father Ho Van Thanh (lying in a hammock) who were found in the jungle in Vietnam. The 82-year-old and his 41-year-old son apparently went missing during the country's war with the USA 40 years ago. The two men allegedly survived by cultivating forest vegetables and hunting animals and had no contact with the outside world. (EPA)


Man and son found in jungle after 40yrs



A man inspects bark shirts made by a Vietnamese father and son who had apparently been living in the jungle for 40 years. (EPA)

Hanoi - An 82-year-old man and his 41-year-old son were found living in a jungle in central Vietnam after they went missing during the country's war with the United States....

The older man could communicate a little in the Cor ethnic minority language, but his son only knew a few words...

Ho Van Thanh was last seen running into the woods with his then infant son Ho Van Lang after a bomb exploded in his home, killing his wife and two eldest sons in 1973....

They were discovered when two people from a nearby village ventured 40 kilometres into the forest looking for firewood and spotted the two men's treehouse. 

The villagers reported the find to local authorities who recovered the pair on Wednesday.

The two men survived by cultivating vegetables and hunting animals. They had no contact with the outside world...

Photographs showed the younger man with dishevelled hair wearing a loin cloth made from tree bark. The men were also found to have made shirts out of the same material

Thanh, who was fighting for North Vietnam when the bomb exploded, left behind another son, Ho Van Tri.

"My father is very weak and the doctors are taking care of him, but my brother's health is fine even though he looks very thin," said Tri, who was six months old when his father fled into the jungle.

Found: Ho Van Lang, 41, has been living in the jungle of Vietnam since he was two years old (EPA)

Thanh is being treated at a medical centre while his son is being looked after by his nephew, Ho Ven Bien.

"My uncle doesn't understand much of what is said to him, and he doesn't want to eat or even drink water," Bien told dpa.

"He's very sad. He doesn't say anything now," he said. "We know he wants to escape my house to go back to the forest so we have to keep an eye on him now."

Hoang Anh Ngoc, chairman of the district, said local authorities had visited Thanh at the medical centre and given him food.

"I asked officials to keep a close eye on the two men to make sure they don't escape back into the forest," he told dpa.

The discovery has shaken the small community, which thought the two men dead.

"No one could imagine Thanh and his son could live 40 years in isolation in the hard conditions of the jungle," said villager Ho Van Xanh.

There are more than 33,800 Cor members living in Vietnam, mostly in a few districts in Quang Ngai and neighbouring Quang Nam province.

Of the 18,500 people living in Tay Tra district, 95 per cent belong to the Cor ethnic group, district chairman Ngoc said.

They make a living mostly from farming cassava, grains and cinnamon.

In the past, all family names were given as "Dinh" but since the war it has been replaced with "Ho" in honour of North Vietnam's first president and revolutionary hero Ho Chi Minh.


Learn from listening

Click "play" to listen to Jungle people: 40 years ago thought dead and "Download" to keep this file for educational purpose.


allegedly: stated without giving complete proof - ที่ถูกกล่าวหา

apparently: based only on what you have heard or think, not on what you are certain is true; seemingly - ตามที่ได้รู้มา

authorities: government officials -

bark: the hard out covering of a tree - เปลือกไม้, เปลือก

cassava: a tropical plant with roots that can be cooked and eaten or made into flour - มันสำปะหลัง

chairman: the person in charge of a committee, a company, etc - ประธาน

communicate: to express thoughts, feelings, or information to another person or animal, for example by speaking or writing - ติดต่อสื่อสาร

community: the people living in one particular area - ชุมชน

conditions: the circumstances or situation in which people live, work or do things - เหตุการณ์, สภาพการ, สถานการณ์

contact: having communication with someone - การติดต่อ การสัมผัส

cultivate: to prepare land and grow crops on it - เตรียมเพื่อเพาะปลูก, เพาะปลูก

discover: to find somebody/something, or learning about something that was not known about before - ค้นพบ

dishevelled: to be be messy, unkempt, untidy, disordered - รุงรัง, ยุ่งเหยิง,ยู่ยี่,ไม่เรียบร้อย,เป็นกระเซิง

eldest: oldest -

escape: to get away from a place where you are in danger - หนี

ethnic minority: a group of people with the same culture or traditions who are living a a place where most people have a different culture and different traditions - ชนกลุ่มน้อยที่มีเชื้อชาติหรือประเพณีและวัฒนธรรมที่ต่างไปจากคนกลุ่มใหญ่ของประเทศ

explode: blast, blow up, burst - ระเบิด

fled (past of flee): escaped; left an area very quickly because of a danger there - หนีไป

grain: the small hard seeds of food plants such as wheat, rice, etc; a single seed of such a plant - เมล็ดข้าว, เมล็ดพืช

hammock: a type of bed made from a net or from a piece of strong material, with ropes at each end that are used to hang it between two trees, posts, etc. - เปล

handout: a free document that gives information about an event or a matter of public interest - ใบปลิว

hero: a person, especially a man, who is admired by many people for doing something brave or good - วีรบุรุษ

hunt: to look for somebody in order to catch them or harm them; to chase wild animals or birds in order to catch or kill them for food, sport or to make money - ตามหา, ล่า

imagine: to form a picture of something or someone in your mind - นึกคิด, จินตนาการ, นึกฝัน

in honour of: to show respect and admiration for somebody - เป็นเกียรติให้กับ

infant: a baby or a very young child - ทารก, เด็กอ่อน

isolation: set apart from; disconnected from - แยกออกมา ตั้งอยู่เดี่ยวๆ

jungle: a thick tropical forest, a place with many trees and wild animals and few people - ป่า

local: in or related to the area that you live, or to the particular area that you are talking about - ท้องถิ่น

loin cloth: a small cloth worn as pants (so that people cannot see the private parts) -

look after: to take care of someone or something - ดูแล

make a living: to earn the money needed to pay for food, a place to live, clothing, etc - ดำรงชีวิต, ครองชีพ

material: a substance that things can be made from - วัตถุ

medical: connected with illness and injury and their treatment - ทางการแพทย์, ด้านการแพทย์, เกี่ยวกับการแพทย์

missing: not present, but not known to have been harmed or killed - หายไป, สูญหาย

neighbouring: located or living near or next to a place or person - ติดกัน, ที่อยู่ใกล้เคียง, ที่ตั้งอยู่ใกล้เคียง

nephew: a son of your brother or sister, or a son of your husband’s or wife’s brother or sister - หลานชาย

pair: two people who are doing something together - คู่

recover: to get something back that has been lost or stolen - ได้กลับคืนมา

revolutionary: involving a great or complete change -

shaken: feeling nervous or frightened because of something that has happened - ตกใจและสะเทือนใจ

spot: to see or notice - สังเกตเห็น

survive: to stay alive after a difficult or dangerous situation - มีชีวิตรอด

survived: continued to live or exist - รอดมาได้

treat: to provide medical care - รักษา

uncle: the brother of your mother or father; the husband of your aunt - ลุง, อาผู้ชาย, น้าผู้ชาย

venture: to go somewhere, especially somewhere that is unpleasant, dangerous or exciting - เสี่ยงภัย ผจญภัย

weak: out of energy - สิ้นเรี่ยวแรง

woods: an area of trees, smaller than a forest - ป่าไม้

More on this topic

Bangkok Post online classifieds

Try buying & selling goods and properties 24/7 in our classifieds which has high purchasing power local & expatriate audience from within Thailand and around the world.

0 people commented about the above

Readers are urged not to submit comments that may cause legal dispute including slanderous, vulgar or violent language, incorrectly spelt names, discuss moderation action, quotes with no source or anything deemed critical of the monarchy. More information in our terms of use.

Please use our forum for more candid, lengthy, conversational and open discussion between one another.

  • Latest
  • Oldest
  • Most replied to
  • Most liked
  • Most disliked

    Click here to view more comments