Nancy Yung may have grown up in Taiwan, but in her eyes San Marino is the only place she can call home. The mother-of-three moved to San Marino in 1975 with her husband Allan after he found a job in the neighboring city of Alhambra.
“When we came here we already had two children so naturally the first thing you’re thinking about is what area should we live in that has an excellent school district,” said Yung. “When we were asking people, everyone told us you have to find a house in San Marino because they have the best school district.”
Now, a San Marino resident for more than 35 years, Yung has become a recognized figure in the community. The wife of San Marino Mayor Dr. Allan Yung, she was asked to be the survivor speaker at last weekend’s
“It was the most wonderful and meaningful event,” said Yung. “When you are first diagnosed you feel so helpless and overwhelmed. As a cancer survivor, I really know how difficult the process is to deal with.”
Yung was diagnosed with bile duct cancer--an extremely rare form of cancer--in 2004. Her doctors told her that she had a five percent chance of overcoming the disease in five years. Seven years after her diagnosis, Yung considers herself a cancer survivor.
“Before I was diagnosed I thought I was superwoman,” said Yung. “I thought I could take on the world and do anything and everything. I took on a lot of stress and work because I thought I could handle it. Most of the time, we don’t take care of own health. I had to go through a transition and learn how to slow down and live a healthy lifestyle.”
The first lady of San Marino now makes a conscious effort to be positive and take charge of her own life. She shares her thoughts on the beloved community she calls home.
What do you like most about San Marino?
I just love San Marino because San Marino really is my home. During my childhood I lived in Taiwan and I moved to the United States when I was 22. Other than the three years my husband was stationed in Japan in the Navy, San Marino has been our home. It is a very peaceful neighborhood. We have the best schools, the best police and the best paramedics.
What is your favorite restaurant in San Marino?
I love them all. is one of my favorites. I also love and . We rotate and eat at all of our favorite restaurants.
What is your favorite place in San Marino to take a stroll or go for a run?
What is a little known fact about you?
A lot of people don’t know that I teach line dancing. When people find out they are always very surprised – they can’t believe that an Asian person would love to line dance. Never in my wildest dreams would I have thought I would teach a line dancing class, but I have been teaching for 10 years and I love it. It is great exercise, great therapy and it helps your memorization.
What is your favorite ice cream flavor?
Chocolate – especially dark chocolate – I have no resistance for it.
What is your message to women battling cancer?
My message to people fighting cancer is to don’t give up. Don’t ever give up. I’m not giving up and neither should they. Not only will you survive, but you will be able to survive and help others. If I had let my diagnosis determine my outcome then I would have set myself up for failure. I decided to take my life in my own hands and forget about the diagnosis. I am one person that has lived beyond their diagnosis and I am so grateful. Every day is a bonus for me.