In Southern Sudan, 1985, a civil war breaks out during Salva's school lesson, and without looking back, he runs away and runs as fast as he could, leaving his family, friends, and old life behind.
Now in Ethiopia, 1991-92 Salva, who is now a young adult, wishes to be like his uncle. His uncle was murdered by a group of Nuer men, who looted his group as well. He is leading a group of young boys who escaped from the Gilo River to a refugee camp in Kenya
Now in Rochester, New York, 1996-2007 Salva is now an adult and is living in America with a new family, who is caring and comforting. He still doesn't give up hope that his family is still out there, and he may just find them. After almost eleven years, Salva finally reunites with his father, and he learns about the dangers of drinking bad water