My son, Thomas Khampheuane, born in May 1952, was killed in an ambush at the same time as Father Lucien Galan, on May 12, 1968. A bullet in the head: he died in the field. With another teenager, he was accompanying the Father who was going out to proclaim the Christian faith and say Mass in a mountain village. The guerilla had forbidden movement there and did not want any priest; they detested the priests of the Christian faith.
This was a terrible shock for my family. My wife died of sorrow. I too was troubled and I have no longer been able to teach catechism. The bishop came to see us; he offered some money to compensate us a little for our loss.
Words failed us, but we said no, for it was evident that for us, our son had died for Jesus. In spite of our sorrow, my wife, my daughter and I were in agreement on one point, on the meaning of the death of Thomas: he had given his life for Christ. People told us: your son is lucky; he died with the priest and will certainly go with him to Heaven. That’s what we believe too. If one day the Church designates him as a martyr and a saint, my family will be very happy.
Testimony of the father of Blessed Thomas Khampheuane,
who died a martyr at the age of 16.