“…..I got my medical training at West China Union University School of Medicine. I had a busy and pleasant time in school from September 1949-1954. After my graduation I was assigned to work in Guiyang Medical College in Guizhou, a neighbour province of Sichuan. It took me three days to get there by bus. I became a surgeon in the affiliated hospital and also taught as assistant. As time passed by, I became a lecturer, an associate professor and professor, till my retirement in 1998. From the early 80s, I majored in orthopaedics as Dr. Outerbridge in the WCUU did.
“I was married in 1966; my wife (Li Jingxia) was a primary school teacher and saleswoman afterwards. She is retired also. We have two children; the first child was handicapped girl at birth. She was very clever. We loved her very much. She passed away in 1991, aged 24. My son, Elton graduated from Kunming Engineering College in 1993. He majored in the field of computers. He works with the Computer Association Ltd. Office in Guangzhou now. He married Li Mei in 1998, but doesn’t have a child yet. “(Letter dated January 2003). They have their own house in Canton.
“In the late 80s, I joined a chorus of older people and sing bass. We have a good conductor and practice regularly. We perform a few times each year. From 1996-2002, our chorus attended the national competition for seniors choruses, sponsored by the Ministry of Culture in different cities. Our chorus has won 2 gold and 3 silver prizes. Jingxia and I were able to see some scenic spots in Wuxi, Nanjing, Shanghai and Qindao. I have a few social activities and we live a life of leisure. We are well. We do exercises in order to keep our health fit; like Tai Ji, walking and climbing small mountains.
“I had opportunities to visit the U.S. three times. In 1986, from May to October, I visited the Health Science Centre, University of Colorado in Denver; the Truman Medical Centre in Kansas City; Baylor University Medical Centre in Dallas, Bethel Hospital in Newton, KS and several other hospitals, clinics and cities. As a visiting scholar many old and new friends helped me. In 1987, I joined an architectural group as an interpreter to attend a meeting in San Francisco. We were invited to attend to visit Texas Tech University in Lubbock by a Chinese professor, Dr. Peng. We toured Los Angeles, Washington, D.C. and New York afterwards. In 1996, my wife and I were invited by some friends to visit the U.S. for six months. We traveled from coast to coast, even saw Niagara Falls from the American side. We crossed the bridge, but were denied entry to Canada because they didn’t have a visa.
“I have had contact with only a few CS schoolmates. I ran into Bob Parker casually in 1987. At that time, Bob worked with the UNICEF office for China. When a group of UNICEF workers visited Guizhou for a program survey, I was appointed to be interpreter. We recognized each other on the second day when we chatted about our personal history in a minibus. We worked together for a week. Carolyn and Bob visited my family. We were able to meet in Beijing a few times until he left China in 1993. In 1996, we visited them in Hagerstown, Maryland. Then I visited Don and Joyce Parker at West Salem, OH. He is a Nephrologist.
“I don’t remember when Bill Willmott resumed touch with me- it must have been the late 80s, when he as the President of the New Zealand-China Friendship Association was invited to visit Guiyang by the metropolitan government. Bill had obtained my address from someone at the university in Chengdu. He said he would like to stay with a friend, so I was his host for three nights. A very good time to recall the days we had in the Canadian School and exchange news updates. I keep up correspondence with Bill and Bob now.”
“Bill passed along my address to Glenn Walmsley who started sending the newsletter to me regularly. When I found Helen Bacon’s name from the CS letters which Mr. (Glenn) Walmsley (Dr. L.C. Walmsley’s son) Seut, I wrote to her and she answered; also Dorothy (Bacon) Kerker. Helen works in Bangkok, Thailand (she is now retired in Listowel, ON). Phyllis (Allen) Donaghy told me more about the CS kids whom she knew. But I’m afraid I can’t remember all the names.
“I am sorry Mr. Newcombe passed away. When I studied in the CS I lived at his house. He and his wife were very kind to me.
“Although I had studied only one year at the Canadian School in Chengdu, the CS gave me a good basic training in English which was very useful in my life. I wish that one day I could visit the beautiful country Canada that I knew when I was a boy.”
Sam concludes with a wish and a dream that he might come to Canada to visit his former CS friends. From this wish came the idea for this reunion. When he heard of the plans, he wrote Phyllis; “Surely I would like to participate in the special reunion of 1947-1950 CSers in 2008 to see schoolmates that I know, to share CS memories and to spend a great time together. But I am 75 years old now and my health is declining. I don’t think I am strong enough to allow me to take a journey to the other side of the globe. It is a pity that I could not come to the reunion.” Sam signs it – “with love, sincerely yours, Sam Wang”