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Paul Quong


1932 - 2016 Obituary Condolences
Paul Quong Obituary
March 11, 1932 - April 26, 2016 Paul Quong died of brain trauma on April 26, 2016. He was born in Hong Kong when his mother and father went for a long vacation from their family farm in Idaho. He enjoyed saying he was conceived in Eagle, Idaho, and born in Hong Kong. Graduating at 16 from high school, he took a year off and worked in San Francisco at the White House department store, a Chinese grocery store and as a delivery boy for a Chinese restaurant before going to U.C. Davis majoring in Agriculture. After graduating, his plan was to run the family farm. He married Martha Ah Fong in 1954 and with his wife and three children, his brother's wife and four children and his parents, it soon became apparent the farm could not support all three families. Every winter, he would go to Boise and find work. One of those jobs was as a produce clerk at a grocery store. When he left the farm, the grocery store owners offered him the manager's position and also asked his help with the building of another store. Paul found it exciting and challenging. In 1963 he went to a Rose Bowl game, and was entranced by the warm weather and the vibrant economy. Within six months, he moved his family to Anaheim and went to work as a produce clerk at Alpha Beta, attended real estate school and sold houses to all his co-workers. He then got his broker's license and made the decision to venture into commercial real estate. Paul heard Albertsons was expanding into southern California and having sold strawberries to Joe Albertson for years while farming, he contacted their real estate people. Paul sold them their first store site in Anaheim. From those beginnings, Paul worked in real estate for Bank of America, Vons Grocery Co., General Manager of Kaiser-Aetna, and gained experience by working with developers. In 1978, he went into business for himself as a developer. During this time, he got his law degree from Pepperdine by going at night. Over the years, Quong Enterprises developed 21 shopping centers, measuring more than 2.6 million sq. ft. In 1980 he added in-house construction to his development company. Paul never fully retired, because in several situations, the buyers of his projects retained him to manage their property and in later years the company evolved into property management. But he was always wanting to do "one more project". His dream was to develop that last one in Maui and retire there. Paul loved finding sites and the challenges of development; however, you can never take the farmer out of the boy. His backyard has an eclectic mix of trees. Avocado, macadamia nut, orange, lemon, cherimoya, apple, two Asian apple, two mango, pear, and a sapote. He also had two papaya trees that survived up to last year. He reveled in his 15 minutes of fame when an article in the July 2001 Sunset magazine featured him growing pineapples on his back patio. Paul was preceded in death by two beloved daughters and is survived by his wife of 62 years, a son and daughter-in-law, and three grandsons. There are no services planned. Perhaps at a later date we will have a celebration of his life and accomplishments. Just give him your blessings. He will be so happy to be with his girls. May he get to develop that project in Maui and may he rest in peace.
Published in the Los Angeles Times from May 3 to May 8, 2016
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