Binh Dinh is one of five provinces and cities where the young Nguyen Tat Thanh left his mark. The duration he stayed in Binh Dinh was not long but it was the place that helped the young man nurture the love for his country and people and define the character of a man who later became the hero of national liberation and an eminent cultural icon: Ho Chi Minh.
According to many records, Nguyen Tat Thanh followed his father, Nguyen Sinh Sac, to Binh Dinh province when he was appointed as a local magistrate in Binh Khe district. What influenced his thinking the most was when his beloved father was dismissed. At the age of 20 when he was fully aware of the country’s bleak situation, he made the momentous decision to travel to the West in search of a way to salvage the nation.
Binh Dinh is not only the place that saw a turning-point in Nguyen Tat Thanh’s life but also the place that witnessed the last days of the father and son being together and the historic farewell, after which the young man embarked on a long journey and never had a chance to meet his father again.
In 2015, Binh Dinh province’s proposal to build a monument of Nguyen Sinh Sac and Nguyen Tat Thanh in the provincial capital of Quy Nhon was approved. The monument, created by sculptors Ta Quang Bao and Vu Dai Binh, is made of bronze and measures 10.8 metres high. The father and son stand side by side, both looking to the East Sea. Nguyen Sinh Sac has the air of a Confucian scholar wearing traditional attire and a pair of wooden sandals while Nguyen Tat Thanh is a young student wearing Western-style clothes and listening attentively to his father’s teachings. Behind the statues of the two men is a 76-metre marble relief with various subjects depicting the places related to Uncle Ho from childhood until he left the country in search of a path for national liberation.
They are the images of a rustic house, the Lam River and a pond of lotuses in Nam Dan where he was born and grew up; Quoc Hoc High School, Truong Tien Bridge, the Perfume River and anti-colonial demonstrations in Hue where he once lived and studied; the Three Tay Son Heroes’ Temple, the meeting venue of Nguyen Tat Thanh and his father and natural scenes in Binh Din province, Champa towers and Duc Thanh School in Binh Thuan province where Nguyen Tat Thanh was once employed as a teacher; and Nha Rong Wharf, the French ship Latouche-Tréville and exploited workers in Saigon.
After the two statues of Uncle Ho at Nha Rong Wharf and Duc Thanh School, the Nguyen Sinh Sac-Nguyen Tat Thanh statue is the third monument depicting Uncle Ho’s youth, and is also the first monument to depict the image of Uncle Ho and his father. The monument is a fine symbol of family relationship and Uncle Ho’s love for his country. After leaving Binh Dinh, Uncle Ho was never to return there again, however the province always remained in his heart and his image lives forever in the mind of local residents, becoming a light helping the people to win two patriotic wars in the past and rise up in national construction at the present.