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Hero Kostas Sarantidis - Nguyen Van Lap laid to rest in Da Nang

Hero Kostas Sarantidis - Nguyen Van Lap laid to rest in Da Nang


A memorial service was held in central Da Nang city on August 2 for Hero of the People’s Armed Forces Kostas Sarantidis - Nguyen Van Lap, a man who held Greek and Vietnamese nationalities and joined the Vietnamese people in the resistance war against the French colonialists.

Representatives from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the State Committee for Overseas Vietnamese, the General Department of Politics of the Vietnam People’s Army, Military Region 5, the Da Nang administration, along with local people came to pay tribute to the deceased who passed away in Athens on June 25, 2021, at the age of 94.

Maj. Gen. Truong Thien To, Deputy Political Commissar of Military Region 5, said Kostas Nguyen Van Lap was born in Greece but he spent his entire youth living and fighting besides his comrades in Vietnam which became his homeland.

The death of the revolutionary soldier has left a great grief to his family, friends, as well as comrades and people in Vietnam. Meanwhile, the Vietnamese Party and State have lost an exemplary “Uncle Ho” soldier who made enormous contributions to the national liberation, construction and defence, To added.

At his and his family's wish, the hero’s remains were brought to Vietnam.

Born in 1927, Kostas Sarantidis - Nguyen Van Lap was forced to serve as a soldier for Nazi Germany in 1943. He was sent to the foreign legion of France after the Second World War ended.

In February 1946, he was brought to Vietnam as a soldier in the French army. However, witnessing the French colonialists’ barbaric crimes against Vietnamese people and realising the just nature of the fight against France, in June 1946, he fled from the French army to a liberated area in Binh Thuan province and joined the Viet Minh force in the resistance war. Since then, he became a friend and a comrade of Vietnamese people who called him by the name Kostas Nguyen Van Lap.

He was repeatedly honoured by the Vietnamese Party and State, including the first-class Feat Order, the Friendship Order, the third-class Victory Order, and the second-class Resistance Order. In particular, he was granted the Vietnamese nationality in 2010 and then the "Hero of the People’s Armed Forces" title in 2013, becoming the first and only foreigner to be bestowed with this title so far.

After the memorial service, remains of Kostas Sarantidis - Nguyen Van Lap were buried at the cemetery of Military Region 5 in Da Nang city./.