Ben Fong - Resident & War Veteran

Ben Fong was born in Sacramento in 1921 and moved with his family to the East Adams District a decade later. After the bombing of Pearl Harbor, Ben decided to join the United States Marine Corps but was refused due to the color of his skin. Ben was later drafted in the Army and stubborn and persistent as he was, became a Military Intelligence expert. For Fong, as well as for many other Chinese Americans, the war was indispensable in solidifying the inclusion of Chinese into the larger American narrative. Now retired, Ben Fong has moved back to Chinatown after getting tired of driving back and forth from the San Gabriel Valley to visit the newly opened Chinatown Public Library, which hosts one of the largest collections of books in Chinese in the country.

Ben's Story

"Ben Fong discusses ownership rights and work restrictions in Chinatown."

The Draft

"Ben Fong recalls his school experience and initial attempts to enlist in the Military."

Moving Back to Chinatown

"Ben Fong remembers the reactions to change in relation to Chinatown."


Story continues below

We are dedicated to providing you with articles like this one. Show your support with a tax-deductible contribution to KCET. After all, public media is meant for the public. It belongs to all of us.

Keep Reading