Wednesday, March 29, 2017

American Education Fosters Engineering Milestone

Retired NASA Chemist, Winifred Huo, was born in Guangzhou, China two weeks before the start of the Sino-Japanese war.  She recalls the first eight years of her life as looking for a safe place to live, and a place where her father could work. (see post one.) 
Winifred’s father was a highly-educated engineer who received his Bachelor Degree in Civil Engineering from Jiaotong University, got his Master’s at University of Michigan, and returned to China,
“He got a job in the provincial Department of Public Works. After the Sino-Japanese war started, he was transferred to the team building the Burma Road.
“The  Burma road is the connection from Yunnan Province to Burma. During the Sino-Japanese war and WWII the big problem for the Chinese was weapons—the Chinese were not good at making weapons. All the good weapons came from the West. And there was no way to do importing.  The Japanese blocked the whole eastern coast.  So the easiest way (to import weapons) was from Burma or India. It was a highway through the jungles and mountains.”
Building the road was a huge team effort of which Winifred’s father was a part. It was also considered one of the remarkable engineering achievements of the time.  
“My mother and I followed him as he went along.  We went to Yunnan for a year and Guizhou for half a year. We spent about two years in Guangdong.”

(To be continued.  Next: Wartime Escape Just Like Movies.)

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