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The story of Kuliang: China-US people-to-people friendship

Updated: 2023-11-15


Elyn MacInnis (left) is photographed with Len Billing (right), one of the Friends of Kuliang. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]

Kuliang, located on the outskirts of Fuzhou, Fujian province, was a summer resort for foreigners in the early 20th century. Today, it attaches great importance to friendship between China and the United States.

In the US, descendants of these families who once lived in Kuliang, formed "Friends of Kuliang", a group dedicated to promote friendly exchanges between the two peoples.

"I'm from the US. I've lived in China for 30 years, and my family has a long story to tell about Kuliang," said Elyn MacInnis, the founder of Friends of Kuliang.

MacInnis and her husband Peter's bonds with China date back to her father-in-law Donald MacInnis, a member of the Flying Tigers — a group of US volunteer fighter pilots who helped Chinese fight the Japanese invasion during World War II. Before his death, he decided to have his ashes scattered after cremation into the Minjiang River, which flows through Fuzhou.

In June 2023, members of the Friends of Kuliang met in Kuliang. They reminisced about the good old days in Kuliang and expressed their love for China.

Bond with Kuliang: 2023 China-US People-to-People Friendship Forum was held in Fuzhou on Jun 28, showcasing that China-US people-to-people friendship can transcend differences in system, culture and language.

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