Sunia Lee in Olympic 2021

It’s hard to pinpoint exactly when Suni Lee became a household name within the diaspora. Perhaps it was in 2019 when she finished second at US Nationals right behind Biles, or maybe it was later that year when she won her first of three world championship medals. No matter, one thing is clear: her name is a unifying force in her community. As for many immigrants, Western ideals of individualism often collide with the values at the heart of the Hmong experience: family and community—the urge to turn towards each other during times of catastrophe and celebration.