Marian Wong Jue was a young girl in Hong Kong in the early 1950's when she began the long journey of coming to the United States and pursing the American Dream. That journey ended on February 18, 2021 but not before and, against the odds, she became, not only the matriarch of the Jue families but, also, a larger-than-life icon in the Houston restaurant business.
David Jue met and fell in love with Marian in Hong Kong in 1954. They married and moved to Shreveport, Louisiana and in 1962, Marian and David opened a small restaurant in Bossier City, called the Hong Kong Restaurant and the Beachcomber Night Club in Shreveport.
In 1968, the Jues moved to Houston and started a Chinese Food product store. David, who had studied to be a chef in Hong Kong, decided to transform the product store into the China Garden restaurant at 1119 Jackson. About ten years later, China Garden had to relocate to its present location because of the building of the George R. Brown convention center. Through Marian's business acumen and tremendous work ethic, China Garden became the place to go for a delicious Chinese food business lunch. In 1997, Houston Mayor Bob Lanier appointed Marian as a director to the Houston Sports Authority Board and she literally helped to break ground for what would be Enron Field. Starting in 2003 and continuing to this day, crowds come to enjoy the wonderful cuisine before and after Toyota Center events as well as other downtown entertainment.
Marian believed that "God gave us two hands and two feet, it's what you do with those that makes you what you are." Her success in life is a testament to her hard work but Marian was definitely not an "all work, no play" kind of woman. She also loved to laugh and loved to live. She loved to make people happy and became "Mama" to all her friends and customers. Those who were fortunate enough to know Mama knew that her "joie de vivre" radiated into everything and no one will ever duplicate her zest for life.
Mama was preceded in death by her loving husband, David; and her son, Wilbert. She is survived by her sons, Richard Jue and his wife Nancy, Cameron Joe, and her daughter, Carol Churchill and her husband Ronald W. III; as well as seven grandchildren, several sisters, a brother, many nieces and nephews and restaurant patrons who will miss her dearly.
Friends are cordially invited to a visitation with the family from five o'clock in the afternoon until eight o'clock in the evening on Thursday, the 25th of February, in the Jasek Chapel of Geo. H. Lewis & Sons, 1010 Bering Drive in Houston.
The funeral services is to be conducted at ten o'clock in the morning on Friday, the 26th of February, also in the Jasek Chapel of Geo. H. Lewis & Sons, where Pastor Coleman Chong will serve as officiant. Virtual attendance may be accessed by visiting her online memorial tribute at GeoHLewis.com
and selecting the "Join Livestream" icon in her Funeral Service information section. There, you may also share memories and words of comfort and condolence electronically with her family.
Interment will follow, via escorted cortege, at Glenwood Cemetery, 2525 Washington Avenue in Houston, following a procession from the funeral home with a pass-by of the China Garden Restaurant.
Honored to serve as pallbearers during the service are Ben Berg, Paul Carr, Eric Ferguson, David Joe, Lou Savarese, and Joel Sprott. Serving as honorary pallbearers are Stan Lee, Tommy Joe, Ken Taylor, Hubert Mayer and Sing Wong.
KINDLY NOTE: in accordance with current state health and safety protocols, and for the safety of all our guests, facemasks and the practice of social distancing are required for attendance at all events.
In lieu of customary remembrances, the family requests with gratitude that memorial contributions in her name be directed to the charity of one's choice