Bhutanese in AZ mourn first death


The Bhutanese community resettled in Arizona mourns the first death of one of the fellow countrymen due to death of critically injured Purni Maya Tamang, 17, who was found unconscious in a swimming pool on September 7.

“She is no more with us,” Chairman of Bhutanese Community in Arizona (BCA), Manorath Khanal, told Bhutan News Service, “The entire community is saddened with the death of such a young girl.”

According to Khanal, doctors at St. Joseph Hospital, where she was undergoing treatment, confirmed the death to the family of the deceased at 3:30 p.m. local time.

“We visited the hospital and Tamang’s family today,” Khanal added, “We have assured all kinds of supports for them. The Bhutanese community is already alert over the tragedy.”

Doctors informed us there are a number of formalities to undergo before getting Tamag’s dead body for cremation, Khanal explained, we are expecting it in a couple of days.

Late Purni Maya Tamang/ Picture courtesy : Her family

“The family wants to conduct funeral rituals based on Buddhist norms,” he added, “We are coordinating with one of the monks from our community in Tucson, expected to arrive in Phoenix shortly. Otherwise, we’ll hire Nepali monk from here itself.”

The Welcome to America has already expressed its willingness to provide some supports for the family. Similarly, the resettlement agency that looks after Tamang’s family has been with it right after the ill-fated incident.

Khanal further added, “The Case Manager of Catholic Charities, Khagendra Baral, has been monitoring the tragedy very closely. He has assured us Charities’ support in all aspects.”

According to Khanal, Catholic Charities is one of the best resettlement agencies in America.

“Probably, we don’t have to worry over anything that we need to complete the funeral rituals of the deceased since Catholic Charities knows what we need,” added Khanal.

BNS could not reach both Catholic Charities its comments and kind of supports it would extend to the family of the deceased.

Late Tamang, who had reached here from Beldangi-I camp, is survived by two sisters, three brothers and parents. One of her elder sister is learnt to be still dwelling in UN-monitored camp in Nepal.

Reported by Nandita Khanal/BNS from Phoenix


  1. We are deeply shocked to hear the sad news of the untimly demise of our beloved youngster Purni Maya Tamang in her new home in USA. At this tender age she left us all without having getting actual chance of enjoying her new life in the world most powerful country. With her death our community lost one of the most promising youth.

    At this hour of great grief we would like to share our deepest condolences to her near and dear ones. May the almighty provides them with enough energy to perform her further rituals and we pray for the departed soul to rest in peace.

    We wish Manorath Khanal and his organization good luck for providing necessary relief to the bereaved family members.

    With Regards,

    Ram Karki and Family
    (formerly from Beldangi-1, B/III/307)
    The Hague, Netherlands.

  2. We have lost an ambassodor of our community. Students today are our asset for tomorrow.
    I and on behalf of Bhutanese of NH would like to express heartfelt condolence to the bereaved family of Tamang.
    Manorath and Khagen, Please feel free to let us know if we the Bhutanese of NH would be of any help to the family of deceased.

    Tika Acharya
    [email protected]

  3. I hope the settlement agencies in America will emphasize on risk of venturing into the swimming pools or sea without proper training during the orientation of new comers into the country. Our kids and teenagers must get excited by the facility and would like to explore them, that is a human nature. In my opinion extra precautions need to be taken by the parents.

  4. The horrifying news of death of Purni Maya Tamang has shocked me and the entire Bhutanese community at Raleigh, NC. At this hour of great sorrow, we extend our heartfelt condolence to the bereaved family and pray the the departed soul rest with peace in heaven.