Allen Wong

April 19, 1924 - December 8, 2023

U.S. Veteran

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Allen Wong

April 19, 1924 – December 08-2023

Allen Wong of Happy Valley, Oregon, passed away of natural causes on the morning of December 8, 2023. He was surrounded by his wife (Nancy) of 66 years, and his five children (Andy, Angela, Cheryl, Howie and Lennie).

Grandpa Allen was born on April 19, 1924, in the tiny Chinese American community of Astoria, Oregon. He called himself the last of the Mohicans because so many of his friends and family had passed away over the years.

As a youth, Grandpa Allen would love to get his speakers and equipment together with buddies so they could have informal dance parties. He and his big brother Byron signed up to serve in the US military during World War II. Grandpa Allen was in the US Navy Sea Bees from 1943 to 1946 and received a US Congressional Gold Medal to honour his service in 2021.

After the war, Grandpa Allen was introduced through his Oregon family contacts to a girl in Hong Kong from a good family. Nancy Yee Bik Yin was born in the same home village as Allen’s own Grandpa George had been, in Hoi Ping, Canton. Allen spoke their native Toisanese dialect but couldn’t read or write Chinese characters. Nancy couldn’t write much English, and so they corresponded with each other through letters that were read to them by family.

Grandpa Allen traveled to Hong Kong in 1957 to meet and marry his picture bride and brought Grandma Nancy Wong back to live in Portland Oregon. Grandma Nancy could barely speak any English when she first arrived in the US, but she bravely got on with life, and they soon had a lively family with five kids. Grandpa Allen worked as an accounting clerk/bookkeeper for the state of Oregon Public Employees Retirement System (PERS).

Grandpa Allen and Grandma Nancy were an exemplar of the Greatest Generation. They knew that life was full of hardship and that was okay. They were devoted to their family and believed that they could survive anything through hard work and sacrifice. Theirs was a typical Asian American family story – getting through by being resourceful, frugal, and by putting education first. They valued service, believing that we are at our best when we are in service to others. Both volunteered at the Chinese Social Service Center in Portland, well into their retirement years.

In an era when our world has become overwhelmingly complex, Grandpa Allen and Grandma Nancy’s reality had a simplicity and innocence that was all about honesty, integrity and love. They always lived humbly and modestly, bearing whatever trials each day brought with stoicism and acceptance. Grandpa Allen was an audiophile and loved to shop at garage sales. He enjoyed watching the ducklings and bunnies in the yard, reading while listening to music or doing jigsaw puzzles.

Grandpa Allen died as he lived, drawing his family together in an ever-closer embrace. His wisdom, kindness and immense legacy will always be with us. We are comforted by the thought of all the other Mohicans and angels who gathered quietly on the other side to welcome him home with open arms.

The family of Allen Wong would like to thank the many staff of Kaiser Permanente Sunnyside for their care and support. A private memorial service will be held at a future date. In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to:

All Classical Radio KQAC,
211 SE Caruthers St, Suite 200,
Portland, OR 97214


(Oregon Public Broadcasting)
EIN: 93-0814638 7140
7140 S Macadam Avenue
Portland, OR 97219




It’s Not Your Passing…
It’s Your Going-
This Gut-Wrenching knowing,
That Your Growing,
Has Gone for Greener Pastures-
It’s Not Just A Silence,
It’s the Absence of Your Voice
Sounds, that Once,
Showed the Air-
So Many Movements It Will Be Remiss Without.
I Wish There Was A Way,
To Reach Out And Speak to You-
Out and Above in That Great Blue-
But I’ve Always Known…
Grandpa, I Love You Too


Poem by Allen’s grandson Quinlan Wong