Loc Tran moved in four years ago after his wife came over from Vietnam. Tran, 37, immigrated with his family as an infant and considers himself American, just as comfortable in Dickinson, where he grew up, as back home. But he thought the apartments would be an easier transition for his spouse, who he met on a trip.
"She'd have been bored out of her mind if we'd moved somewhere else because she wouldn't have had anyone to talk to," he said. "It's just kind of easing into the process of becoming Americanized."
Anti-communism sentiment still bleeds deep in Thai Xuan and a yellow-and-red South Vietnamese flag billows proudly outside the entrance. But inside, residents have experienced for themselves the growing pains of building a democracy.