Be a good American citizen... but don't forget your heritage.
At 99 years of age - Susan Ahn Cuddy is the oldest lving Korean born in America. She is an awesome person and pioneering woman. When you consider all her achievements it is an unbelievable legacy.
Susan is truly a Pioneer - a real go-getter high flying achiever. Being a woman at the time of her historical achievements makes her accomplishments in a man's world more meaningful.
She is an outstanding American citizen who never forgets her Korean heritage. Her journey through life as an American born daughter in one of California's first Korean immigrant families is a unique story. Her father Dosan Ahn Chang Ho and her mother Yi Hye Ryon (Helen Ahn) were the first married couple to come from Korea to the US in 1902. Dosan was a freedom fighter and respected leader who dedicated his life to save Korea from Japanese imperialism. Her mother was a central figure in the early Korean community in Southern California. Helen Ahn instilled sincere patriotism for Korea and America in Susan and the other Ahn children.
Susan overcame many difficult obstacles, like poverty and racisim, on her pathway to becoming an esteemed person and remarkable role model.
Susan is in great health at 99. Nevertheless, she has had some complicated experiences worth sharing in her section about Health. Her latest accident was a fractured femur on March 31st, 2014. With a lot of hard work and good care givers Susan is walking again. Hydration and eating enough decent food are two key elements in recovery and maintaining health. FYI - since 1998 Susan has recovered from breaking one hip twice, the other one once, a broken wrist, a broken elbow, a broken shoulder, a severe kidney infection from dehydration and not eating and the above femur fracture. She certainly is tough.
Susan is also a survivor of two battles with breast cancer. She had the will to win the fight and has been in remission for twenty years. Many thanks to the American Cancer Society and Susan G. Komen for the Cure and all their supporters joining the fight.
February 2013 Shear Delight in Northridge Lt. Cuddy looking great at 98! check the nails, too.
April 18 - Stopping for pizza and salad while shopping at The Northridge Mall
The 1st Asian WAVE - The 1st Woman US Navy Gunnery Officer - The 1at Asian Woman in Naval Intelligence - The 1st Asian Woman National Security Agency Code Breaker and Section Chief
Susan in Action World War II
These are photos from US Naval Air Station in Pensacola, Florida in 1943. Susan was a Gunnery Officer with the rank of Ensign. You can see her uniform is different than the other WAVES - black hat, gold buttons and gold striped sleeves. It is quite an accomplishment for a woman in those times - mores so an Asian woman in a time when racism was high against Asians because of the Japanese being the enemy. She trained pilots air combat tactics and how to shoot down Japanese planes. These pictures are official US Navy photographs.
Susan Ahn Cuddy is a Korean American Pioneer. She is an outstanding American citizen who has not forgotten her Korean heritage. Her journey through life as an American born daughter of one of California's first Korean immigrant families is a unique story. Susan overcame many difficult obstacles on her way to becoming a remarkable and successful person. Her courage to do the right thing has been a big part of her success.
Her achievements as a student leader, an athlete, the first Korean American woman in the US military services, her work for US Navy Intelligence and her role at the National Security Agency reveal her courage. She has been recognized as a role model and received many awards for her contributions to society. In 2003 California State Assembly member Mark Ridley Thomas presented her as his choice for Woman of the Year. Her most recent honor was the 2006 American Courage Award presented to her by the Asian American Justice Center in Washington DC.
Susan comes from a family an amazing family. Susan's father and mother, Dosan Ahn Chang Ho and Helen Ahn came to America in 1902. They were the first married couple from Korea to arrive in America.Their Korean passports were 51 and 52Her father is a highly respected historical figure in both America and Korea.For more information about her family search Dosan Ahn Chang Ho, Helen Ahn, Philip Ahn the famous actor, Philson Ahn, Soorah Ahn or Ralph Ahn.
Seoul 2003 on her book signing tour
Susan Ahn Cuddy's Biography
I am enjoying reading about your family's story and learning more about my Korean American heritage. I graduated from UC Irvine with a Bachelor's Degree in Asian American Studies, but I didn't learn as much as I would have hoped about the early days of the Korean pioneers in Los Angeles. Recently, I saw the Dosan Ahn Chang Ho Memorial sign above the Harbor Freeway and wondered who he was. Thank you for sharing your history with such grace, candor and bravery. Your book is a treasure. Sincerely, Lauren Kim 3-12-07
Susan Ahn Cuddy has been found on a variety of web sites. Please use the links on this site or search her name on the internet to see other sources of information.
Dosan's Last Japanese Prison Photo Sodaemun 1937
March 10 is a day Susan Ahn Cuddy remembers. It is Dosan Ahn Chang Ho's death day. After dedicating his entire life to free Korea from Japanese Imperialism and to help Koreans all over the world, Susan's father suffered a painful death. Dosan's life of struggling to obtain Korean Independence and the torture during his five terms in Japanese prisons in Korea left him quite ill with pulmonary tuberculosis and peritonitis being his final battle. Every breath Dosan took was for Korea and Korean people.
Susan followed in the patriotic footsteps of her father. She served the Korean Indpendence Movement in America as a leader of the young Pioneer Generation Korean Americans. She was born in Los Angeles and grew up in a difficult and demanding time for a young girl in an immigrant family trying to save her parent's country. When the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor she answered the call to duty and joined the US Navy - the first Asian Woman in the Armed Forces. She also found a way to fight to free Korea and seek justice for the death of her father.
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