Family works to keep Iris Chang’s legacy alive

China 24

Family works to keep Iris Chang's legacy alive

American writer, Iris Chang, wrote the “Rape of Nanking”. It became a best-seller shining a light on that dark period of history.

Though she suffered an early death, but as CGTN’s Mark Niu reports, Chang’s parents continue their fight for truth.

Visiting the gravesite of a beloved child is a cruel task for a parent. Each time Ying Ying and Shau Jing Chang come, they do find some comfort in seeing flowers already there.

Strangers bring them all the time to pay tribute to Iris and all she stood for.

“Iris has a very close relationship with me and her mother, yes. She always liked to ask questions with us. From time to time, still think about her. Yes, I feel the pain.”, said Shau Jing Chang Iris Chang’s father.

Battling depression, Iris tragically took her own life in 2004 at the age of 36.

During her short life, the dogged journalist and author wrote “The Rape of Nanking,” an award-winning book and best-seller, that painstakingly details the horrors of war.

In April, in Huai’an China, the hometown of Iris’s grandfather the Iris Chang Memorial Hall opened, featuring a wax figure of Iris and many of her writings and speeches.

“My husband and I very happy that the world still remembers Iris. This year is her 13th anniversary of passing. Still seems people remember her and the work she initiated still continues and of course we also continue her unfinished work. We are very happy to see a lot of things happening.”, said Ying Ying Chang Iris Chang’s mother.

Earlier this year, the Changs were happy to witness what they see as a continuation of Iris’s work, the unveiling of the first ‘comfort women’ memorial in a major United States city, San Francisco.

The Changs were disturbed by the reaction of the Japanese government.

“Japanese government still continued protesting. They launched a campaign for a lot of people in Japan to write protest letter. They were forced against will, kidnapped young girls, women to go into military brothel. How could they deny this part of history,” Ying Ying Chang said.

The honors for Iris continue at a soon to be made park just a few minutes’ walk from her parent’s home called the Iris Chang Park.

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