Hog's Exit explores the mysterious death in 1982 of Jerry "Hog" Daniels, a former CIA case officer to legendary Hmong leader General Vang Pao during the U.S.'s "secret war" in Laos. Drawing on first-person reminiscences of Daniels's colorful life, Morrison also captures the drama and beauty of the Hmong spirit rituals, as well as the lamentations and suspicions that pervade this unusual funeral ceremony. Americans and Hmong, ranchers and refugees, State Department officials and smokejumpers, share their memories about Daniels: growing up; hunting and fishing in Montana; cheating death in Laos; and carousing in the bars and brothels of Thailand. Hog's Exit provides a fascinating view of a man and the two very different cultures in which he lived.
Gayle L. Morrison has worked with the Hmong community since 1977 in education, refugee services, private enterprise, and as an oral historian, researcher and writer. The author of Sky Is Falling: An Oral History of the CIA's Evacuation of the Hmong from Laos (1999), she lives in Santa Ana, California, and Missoula, Montana.