Gloria Suie Chin (November 10, 1925 – October 16, 2016), known professionally as Maylia Fong, was an American actress.
Gloria Suie Chin
November 10, 1925
Detroit, Michigan, U.S.
|Died||October 16, 2016 90) (aged|
Costa Mesa, California, U.S.
|Spouse(s)||Benson Fong (1946-1987) (his death) (5 children)|
|Children||Cynthia Fong (b. 1948)|
Preston Oden Fong
Lori Fong (b. 1951)
Pamela Fong (b. 1953)
Lisa Fong (b. 1957)
Brian Fong (. 1948)
Fong was cast in her first film as the character Ming Ling in the 1947 romantic film Singapore, also starring Fred MacMurray, after she was spotted by the wife of producer Sidney Buchman in a Paramount canteen while visiting her sister in California. After her successful reception in Singapore, Fong portrayed a Chinese orphan in To the Ends of the Earth in 1948 starring Dick Powell and Signe Hasso. Fong then appeared in Boston Blackie's Chinese Venture (1949), Chinatown at Midnight (1949), Call Me Mister (1951) and Return to Paradise (1953). She was one of the few Asian-American actresses working in Hollywood at the time. She was referred to as the “first Chinese starlet since Anna May Wong” by Paramount Pictures official studio publicity.
Fong was born in Detroit, Michigan. In 1947, while visiting her sister in Los Angeles she met her future husband, Benson Fong. The pair wanted to get married, but they needed a steady income, so they started a chain of restaurants called Ah Fong.
After her last film in 1953, Return to Paradise, Fong retired from acting to focus on her family. She had five children with her husband Benson. Their names are Cynthia Fong (b. 1948), Preston Oden Fong, Lori Fong (b. 1951), Pamela Fong (b. 1953), and Lisa Fong (b. 1957). Three of her five children (Pamela, Kwong, and Lisa) are also actors. Fong also had nine grandchildren at the time of her death in 2016.
Fong and her husband successfully ran a chain of Chinese restaurants in Los Angeles County called Ah Fong. In 1949, they had saved up enough money to open their first restaurant location in Hollywood, California, on Vine Street. By 1971, the chain had locations in Hollywood, Anaheim, Encino, Westwood and Beverly Hills.
In 1984, the restaurant received a favorable recommendation in the Los Angeles Times as a place for Mother's Day lunch.
She and her husband stopped managing the chain in 1985, shortly before her husband's death in 1987. In 1987, only one location remained in Hollywood and was being managed by a relative.
Fong died in her sleep at her home in Costa Mesa, California, on October 16, 2016. She was survived by her five children and nine grandchildren.
- "Oden Fong and a summary of his life". Douglas Nicholson's Podcast. August 14, 2014.
- "Restaurants gear up for Mother's Day". Los Angeles Times. May 4, 1982. Retrieved July 23, 2017 – via Newspapers.com.
- Millman, Penelope (August 3, 1987). "Benson Fong, Character Actor and Founder of Cafes, Dies". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved July 9, 2017.
- Barnes, Mike (October 24, 2016). "Actress in 'Singapore' and 'To the Ends of the Earth,' Dies at 90". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved July 9, 2017.