With the population of Newfoundland being 99.9% white and ignorant of traditional Chinese foods, the Rose Gardens restaurant served all kinds of western food such as hamburgers, fish and chips, sandwiches and of course the usual Chinese Canadian sweet and sour fare.
By 1947, with the repeal of the Chinese Immigration Act, Wing Nun made haste and quickly brought over his family from Guangdong and other relatives to Newfoundland. Fung Hi, unsure of what to expect in this new country learned to cook and worked in the Rose Garden restaurant. Finally united, the couple eventually gave birth to three children, May, Ginger and David, the first of the Eng family to be born in Canada.
As the family grew in the immediate post-war years, the economy was on its downfall and with Newfoundland joining Canadian confederation in 1949, made more sense to leave the island for good. After a fatal car accident that took the life of Wing Nun, Fung Hi decided to leave Newfoundland and start a new life on the mainland. Selling the Rose Garden restaurant, the Eng family arrived in Toronto in 1964 with much anticipation.
Fung Hi never worked in a restaurant again, but offered willing support and advice for her children in Toronto. As time passed, the Eng family children grew up and prospered, starting families of their own and fulfilling their father’s ambitions of a successful life away from agriculture and farming. Fung Hi Eng, now in her mid 70’s, enjoys reminiscing of the olden days and her experiences in once running a Chinese restaurant in Newfoundland.
With the official apology for the Chinese head tax in 2006, Fung Hi receives recognition on behalf of Wing Nun for the wrongs committed by the Canadian government. Thus coming to full circle the story of Wing Nun Eng and his part in Chinese Canadian history.