Ying Ong, American Radio Patriot

1942NovRadioCraftShown here in the November 1942 issue of Radio Craft is Ying Ong of Phoenix, Arizona, rightly described by the magazine as an American radio patriot.

Mr. Ong took it upon himself to listen to and transcribe the broadcasts from Chungking Radio. He took the contents down by shorthand, and then relayed them to his fellow Chinese-American countrymen and to American news services. His dispatches often were made by telegram, and he bore the expense himself. He also sent copies to the FCC, Chinese-American newspapers, and the Chinese consulates.

The nationalist Chinese government took note of this, and at one point sent him a check for $100 to help cover his expenses. He endorsed the check over to the China War Relief Fund.

The broadcasts of the powerful GE San Francisco shortwave station KGEI often, the magazine noted, contained in its newscasts the phrase “Chungking radio says….” These reports were able to hit the air so quickly thanks to Mr. Ong’s transcripts of the broadcasts.

I was not able to find a listing for Mr. Ong in either the 1940 or 1946 call books, so I don’t believe he was a licensed ham.  But as an SWL, he certainly performed a service to both China and America by ensuring that nationalist broadcasts were received in this country by all who needed to hear them.

According to the Social Security Death Index, a Ying Ong, born on 25 August 1918, with a place of residence in Phoenix, died on 17 July 1992. He is buried at Greenwood Memory Lawn Cemetery in Phoenix.


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