After graduating from Alameda High School in June 1949, Calvin attended University of California at Berkeley in 1949. While at University, he was drafted to serve in the Korean War in January 1951. After serving, he returned to school to complete a degree in electrical engineering and went on to work in the high tech industry in Silicon Valley. He eventually returned to the family business of making fortune cookies based in Oakland, CA and built a national business of cookie production.
Adjusting to life in America was difficult for Calvin, not speaking a word of English. He had to start school a month after his arrival, beginning first grade at nine years old. He persevered in school and entered University of California Berkeley in 1949 until he was drafted in 1951 to fight in the Korean war. After the war he returned to the US, received a combat medic’s badge and 4 battle stars and graduated from Berkeley in 1956.
The story of Calvin Chew Wong is representative of the idea of generational history passed down that is explored in the reading To Carry History. It took four first generation immigrants of the Wong Family to come to settle in America before a second generation Wong was born on American soil. From Calvin’s family line, he, Calvin Chew Wong was the first generation to emigrate to America, his son Michael Wong was the first second generation to be born, and his grandson Justin Matsuura was the first third generation to be born to the Wong Family. Now there are three generations of Calvin Wong’s line who are living in America.