Kuang Lui Meng was born in China on Dec. 30, 1943. He made it to Taiwan and immigrated to New York. Shiao Mei Wang, also born in China, did the same and they married in Manhattan in 1974. Kuang adopted the name “Jimmy K” and opened up a successful lumberyard.
They were blessed with a baby girl, named Grace, on Oct. 1, 1975. They bought a home at 211-18 34 Ave. in Bayside. The address may have played a part in selecting the property as the number 18 in Asian culture means “great success and prosperity.”
Jimmy advanced himself in the Chinese Merchants Association and entered politics, becoming assemblyman for the 22nd District and leaving office in 2006.
Grace, then an attorney living in Manhasset, LI, felt obligated to continue her father’s works in the Asian community. She was blocked on a residency challenge filed by Ellen Young, who then won the seat.
Grace came back strong in 2008, defeating Young. In 2012, she became the first Asian American elected to Congress from New York; that same year Jimmy was convicted on a federal fraud charge.
The 2,696-square-foot 34th Avenue home is still in the family. Since 2000, it has been under the name of Grace Mansion Realty LLC and is appraised at $1,250,000 today.