A Soldier, and Army Officer
My father was born in the city of Liuyang, Hunan Province, China 湖南瀏陽; the only child in his family. At age 17, after his mother died, he enlisted in the army.... courageously fought in many combat missions defending the country against the Japanese aggression. Subsequently, his superior encouraged and nominated him to enroll at the Whampoa Military Officers Academy「黃埔軍官學校」for a twenty-month training program.
A Mormon Family
One evening in February 1958 while strolling passed by a high school on their way home, my parents noticed two white-shirted missionaries, out of curiosity they approached the young Elders in the street and exchanged contact information. Within the next six months of six months, despite the intimidation and harassment from the pastor-landlord and neighbors, my family regularly receiving visits and lessons at our home from Elders Joel L. Durrant and F. Grant Allen, James W. Roberts and Thomas Opfar. To avoid drawing unnecessary attention from neighbors, door was closed and windows were covered whenever the elders were at our house. Our neighbors and the Wesley Church pastor were infuriated.... And before long the Elders and my family became targets of verbal abuses, some even poured water on the missionaries and started name-calling.
In spite of unfavorable economic circumstances and great opposition among their neighbors and friends, my parents, along with their four small children happily accepted the missionaries’ messages. The NINGs joined the church. We now the only Mormons in our neighborhoods. At first, it was difficult attending church alone, but we learned to accept that we were peculiar in the minds of others.
After joining the Mormons, welfare assistance was immediately terminated by the Protestant church with which my parents had previous affiliated. The NING's membership in the Mormon Church angered the Wesley Church pastor and their neighbors; the pressure became increasingly intolerable. My father determined not to give in or to compromise – at the end, his suicide attempt to protest against eviction stopped the bullying from the pastor-landlord. Simply, because of the bad publicity for their church so he backed-off, and swiftly left my father alone when the newspaper's report of the ex-Colonel's infamous ordeal generated outpouring of sympathy and support to the NING family.
A Noodle Man
As a result of a discussion with President H. Grant Heaton at the mission home helped President Grant better understood the NING family situation. He approved my father's business pan and offered him a small loan. Prior to Grant's passing in 2011 we had a phone conversation, and I took the liberty to clarify an inaccurate account of my father's ordeal that Grant had written and published in1999. Also I reminded him of his kindness act, and I thanked him.... And he claimed that the loan to my father was his "Perpetual Fund'' program so to speak. In the coming years, the home-based noodle business enabled my father to be self-reliant and independent. He had kept the noodle business for twenty-six years until his retirement.
Yet the family business demanded a heavy workload for everyone, we all had to do our shares such as noodle packing and delivering to grocery stores in the cities. My mom worried about her sons education. In September 1965, my older brother and I were sent to a Catholic boarding school located where the old refugee camp had been, only now there were more houses and people. Sadly, mom passed away at the hospital during the Chinese New Year 1967 spring-break, and we had to withdraw from school moving back home.
My mom was a stalwart faithful church member. Due to her suffering chronic heart disease, depression, stressful and undesirable living condition, which causing her health gradually deteriorated and succumbed to illness.
Ultimately, she gave up the fight for her life, died in the hospital on February 17, 1967. She was 41-years-old. As a family, coping with the loss of a mother and a wife was extremely difficult and painful but through the Lord’s tender mercy, our sorrow and suffering in time filled with comfort and hope.