Houn, Wally

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Houn, Wally

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        Wally Houn was born as Quon Woy Tien on December 12, 1943 near Canton in Guandong Province, China. In 1953, Houn immigrated to Medicine Hat and lived with his grandfather, Ben Quon, who was the owner of a restaurant. Houn came to Canada with false identification papers in order to support his family in China. When the Canadian government granted amnesty to illegal immigrants in 1967, Houn was able to use his birth name but chose to remain Wally Houn with his birth name added as middle names.

        Houn attended post-secondary education at Ryerson Polytechnic University in Toronto, Mount Royal College in Calgary, and the University of Calgary. After graduation, Houn taught English in public schools in Swift Current, Nobleford, Edmonton, Hussar, and Strathmore until retiring in 1996.

        Houn first became interested in photography as a junior high school student and developed it as a hobby. In the late 1970s, when Houn was living and teaching in Hussar, he became interested in documentary photography and began photographing people and places in Hussar. This work was eventually exhibited in Calgary, Edmonton, and Saskatoon and led to more photography work for the 75th anniversary of Alberta in 1980 and a national exhibition of the Hussar project.

        Since then, Houn has worked as an actor and is a member of the Alliance of Canadian Cinema, Television, and Radio Artists.

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