Hre Kio (7/7/1973-7/7/2018)
We love being a part of the lives of refugees here in the Fox Valley. As an office, it brings us great joy to welcome, get to know, and watch as many incredible and unique families and individuals arrive to America and rebuild their lives here. We are always impressed with the humor that we encounter, in awe of the resilience and determination we observe, and heartened by the love we witness. Each of us has learned truth, trust, belief and hope from the clients that we come to know. Hre Kio was no exception. As a staff, we are better people today than we were yesterday not because of the work that we do, but because of the people (like Hre) that we meet.
Hre Kio arrived to the Fox Valley as a refugee in October of 2014 after fleeing his home in Burma in 2007. He came to America as a Chin Burmese Christian refugee. This background made Hre an ethnic minority in Burma; he is one of thousands of refugees in history to flee due to violence and threats because of this identity. Hre was known for being quiet, kind, respectful and hardworking. In Wisconsin, Hre became part of a tight-knit community and helped welcome and befriend additional newcomers; some of them recount him accompanying them on unfamiliar bus trips to the store when they were new to the area. He had many friends from Burma in different parts of the state including the Fox Valley, Sheboygan and Milwaukee. While staff remember Hre’s quiet kindness, his community spoke of more; Hre was devoted to church, talented and passionate. He attended Zomi Trinity Baptist Church in Fond du Lac where he was given the new name of Hang Lam Pau. Hre Kio’s friends describe him as funny and hardworking and remember that he enjoyed time spent fishing and that he could play both the guitar and the drums.
Hre was diagnosed with Cancer in November of 2017 but even through the days after diagnosis he was remembered as a brave man; always saying he wouldn't let his illness kill him. Sadly, Hre Kio passed away on his 45th birthday. He leaves behind a mother, older brother, and younger sister as well as many beloved friends and community members. Though we are saddened at the loss of Hre Kio, we are thankful for the opportunity to have worked and laughed with him. We are thankful for his ability to impact the Fox Valley and the lives of his community members. Mostly we are thankful remembering that though we have lost him, He has gained an eternity with Christ.
Rest in peace, Hre.