A daring escape from oppression in her native Vietnam, pirates attacking the boat that was whisking her to safety, two years in a Thailand refugee camp battling tuberculosis. By age seven, Dr. Chau Pham’s journey was unfurling like the trailer to a Hollywood film. Then, like a scene from a movie, she met the first of many heroes who would forever change the course of her life: a doctor from the Red Cross who gave her a clean bill of health and put her back on her path to Canada— and to freedom.
An impressionable young kid, she knew in that moment she had to become a doctor. She also knew why: “The secret to happiness is in giving to others,” said Pham years later.