Utah community loses veteran community member


Hundreds of Bhutanese Community members of Salt Late City, Utah attended the funeral ceremony of a long serving Bhutanese social worker and a community volunteer Padam Lal Dhungyel on January 16 at a local Larkin Mortuary. The funeral procession was conducted as per the Hindu tradition and ritual.

Late Dhungyel

Late Dhungyel, who is remembered as guardian in the community was temporarily stationed at Beldangi I refugee camp in Nepal before getting resettled in Utah in 2008. Back in Bhutan, he served his fellow community members as Karbari (village leader) for 16 years. While in the camp, he was an active camp committee member for over a decade.

The former president of Bhutanese Community of Utah, Hem Dulal said in his condolence message that late Dhungel was second Gandhi in regard to his social service and his philosophy. Following the funeral ceremony, chief secretary of BCU Mr. Kedar Dhakal issued a statement stating that  late Dhungyel will be remembered as honorary figure in the community.

He was one of the founding members of BCU, and was struggling for a month after two  successive surgeries of his recently diagonized esophagus cancer and lungs problem. He was pronounced death by the doctors at the ICU of University of Utah, Huntsman Cancer Hospital on January 14th.

Late Dhungel was an employee in Catholic Community Services of Utah, a resettlement agency, and is survived by his wife, four sons and one daughter.


  1. I knew Padam L. Dhungel very well here in Utah. We met several times to discuss about the formation of the Community and were able to form the Bhutanese Community of Utah. His words, advice and way of dealing with the issues that comes across.During my tenure, I always sought his direction and advice. He was a real devoted social worker and the guardian of the community. I was personally deeply shocked of his demise which I have never expected as everyone. I have cried for the second time with the broken heart in my life and every time I think of him, his works and words, my heart becomes heavy and tears roll down my eyes. He was my inspire. With his death, a chapter of the history of Bhutan and the Bhutanese Community of Utah is closed.