Mourners pay tribute to Rape of Nanking author
The acclaimed Chinese-American author Iris Chang was eulogized in simultaneous ceremonies in northern California, Washington and Nanjing, China, after her apparent suicide earlier this month.
Family members said she suffered from depression and had been hospitalized for it.
Speakers at a ceremony prior to her burial here said her haunting bestseller, "The Rape of Nanking: The Forgotten Holocaust of World War II," may have contributed to the internal anguish that led to her death.
"She felt other people's suffering so intensely, to the point that it made her suffer," friend Barbara Masin said during the 75-minute memorial.
US Representative Michael Honda sent a representative to read a tribute that he presented in Congress earlier in the week.
"Her fierce pride of her Chinese-American heritage empowered others with the certainty that they were truly Americans despite their ancestry," the tribute said.
China's Vice Consul General Ciu Xuejun attended the burial along with hundreds of mourners, including Tim Yip, a 38-year-old fan.
"She helped me fill in the gaps about why my parents and their parents came to America," Yip said. "She helped me understand."
Chang was seen as a leading US non-fiction author and was widely known here and in Asia for her studies of Chinese immigrants and their descendents in the United States.
"The Chinese in America: A Narrative History," was published last year and traces more than 150 years of Asian American history.
But her best-known book was the 1997 "Rape of Nanking," which details the slaughter of Chinese civilians by the Imperial Japanese army that occupied China in the late 1930s.
It was the first major full-length English-language account of the atrocity and remained on the New York Times bestseller list for months.