Mang-So Tsoi-Pullar

December 13, 1934June 26, 2018
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The Odyssey of Mang-So Leung Tsoi Pullar

It is a joy and honor to introduce Mang-So Tsoi-Pullar, our Wife, Mother, Daughter, Sister, Counselor, Scholar, Scientist, Friend and Christian Exemplar to all. Our Wonderful Mang-So went into the arms of the Lord June 26 at home after a long battle against Pleural cancer (Mesothelioma). Her husband had the privilege of holding her hand as she passed into the heavenly world.

Mang-So was born in Hong Kong in 1934 and experienced World War II up close and personal. When Hong Kong was invaded in 1941, her family became refugees and fled to the countryside in Canton. These were hard and perilous times that built an internal toughness and self-reliance into her that enabled her to persevere, no matter the challenge, and to succeed. After the war Mang-So resumed school and, because of her perseverance and intellect she was admitted to The Diocesan Girls School, the premier girl’s school in Hong Kong. While in school she received Christ because her classmate persevered and introduced her to the Lord. The new school taught in English, a language foreign to her, but with her father’s coaching she graduated with honors. She then went to college and earned a bachelor’s degree. After that her odyssey began when she came to America in 1959 for more education. And did she ever get more education! The trip to America was in an ocean liner from the American President Lines. Truly that was a different time.

Mang-So’s American college education began at Whitworth College in Spokane where she quickly earned a BS degree and moved on to the University of Washington microbiology department on a fellowship. Her studies there earned her a master’s degree and her first PhD. She loved science. After graduation she had two sons, Douglas and Ken, then applied her education to cancer research at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center where she became an expert on the immune system and graft versus host disease. During this time, she published over 50 research papers, presented research results at international symposia and was appointed a research professor, while raising 2 boys. The director of the Center was awarded the Nobel Prize for the bone marrow transplantation cancer treatment they developed. Because of the importance of her research, she was listed in “Who’s Who in Frontier Science and Technology” and “Who’s who in the West.” Even with so much on her plate, she balanced her life and took up dancing in a serious way excelling in the Seattle area, winning many awards, then traveling to Las Vegas where she and her partner (well beyond Dennis’ ability) were overall winners in the MGM Grand Competition in 1978.

Alas, Mang-So’s science career was disrupted when she married Dennis and began a new chapter in her odyssey. Dennis was relocated to Minnesota and she gave up her immunology career for homemaking. But this was not challenging enough so she returned to college and earned more degrees. Because of her intense commitment to helping others, she chose psychology as her field and entered the University of Minnesota. This led to her second master’s degree and second PhD. Psychology became her passion and the tool she used to connect with and help others. She loved the interaction and sharing that came with counseling.

The next stop in Mang-So’s odyssey was in the bay area in California. There she completed the public service requirements of her PhD. while volunteering at a multi-services clinic serving many populations in the Richmond district of San Francisco. This wonderful amazing study machine prepared for, took the California licensing examination and passed it the first time. This is an examination that less than 50% ever pass and some take it 10 times. Wonder woman! After receiving her license, she counseled students at San Francisco State University and San Jose State University. In her spare time, she began her own practice, helping individuals referred to her by friends and the courts. She especially delighted in helping young Asians.

Mang-So’s odyssey next brought her to a brief stay in Pittsburgh where she barely had time to unpack. While there she connected with Carnegie Mellon university and began student counseling, but it was time to roll on to the next location.

Her next stop in the odyssey was St. Louis. She thrived in this location, she had found a wonderful church that welcomed her into its heart. There she reached out to the congregation and began to present seminars on counseling that integrated scripture, special songs (she adored “It is well with my Soul”) and sound self-examination strategies. She joined bible study groups that opened their hearts to each other and shared life lessons. This was true witnessing and sharing. It was an opportunity for her to share her counseling skills with congregation members and she did it with zeal. Because of her skills, the church reached out to help immigrant restaurant workers and she counseled them. But it was time to return to home.

The last stop in Mang-So’s American odyssey was returning to her beloved Bellevue. She loved Bellevue and her circle of friends from school days: it was home. It also brought her back to her home church, Westminster Chapel, which she had attended since 1977. Needless to say, she immediately joined church groups such as talk time (dedicated to helping ESL clients), bible study groups and fellowship groups. But her joy came from groups she led. Her first special passion was centered on the Truth Project, a 12-part series from Focus on the Family, dedicated to sharing the Christian worldview by examining topics such as philosophy, science and theology. Her special joy came when she presented this material to a group of young people recently arrived from China with Mandarin as their first language. After presenting the Truth Project to several groups, she established the Bi-Cultural couples growth group which is an area that was dear to her heart for many years. The Bi-Cultural group is dedicated to exploring how God’s word is important and can help with the success of cross-cultural marriage; by sharing experiences and differences between the partners. She continued to host meetings of the group until June 10; two weeks before she went home. Her emails to the group always included the phrase (If God is willing). She wholeheartedly, willingly and happily served God her whole life. She asked her husband to continue the group. He will.

A special joy for Mang-So in recent years has been the return of her son, Ken, to the Northwest in 2016. He moved back home, bringing his children, Mang-So loved having her grandchildren at her side. She now had the opportunity to spend time with them and watch them mature. This completed the circle; her odyssey was ended.

This was also Mang-So’s first opportunity to resume some serious international traveling. She saw the world, beginning with travel to Australia, then Eastern Europe, the Baltic Sea Countries, the Mediterranean, the Canadian Rockies, the British Isles, China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Thailand, Singapore and all sorts of exotic spots in between. However, she always returned to her home Bellevue, and to her wonderful circle of family, friends and church.

Her health issues first presented in 2009 when she slipped on the stairs, was x-rayed, which revealed stage 1A cancer in her left lung. The fall on the stairs was a blessing because the cancer was detected early. One lobe of the left lung had to be removed and the cancer was fully removed despite continuing discomfort in her chest. But she did not let that slow her down, she fought back and won. The Lord had this amazing plan to keep Mang-So around doing his work. Annual PT Scans disclosed nothing until November 2016 when pleural tumors were detected in the lung cavity, and chemotherapy began in February 2017. She received chemotherapy then immunotherapy then chemotherapy until May 2018. The end was descending on our beloved wife, mother and friend.

As we look back on her life, it is clear that we have been left with a legacy of achievement and serving others. Memories that we can cherish can be summarized by these bible verses and gospel songs. Throughout Mang-So’s life she unceasingly “…pressed on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus (Philippians 3:14) because She knew that “He Lives,” that Jesus would be with her “Through it All,” she always said, “It Is Well With My Soul’ and because Mang-So always knew “What a Friend in Jesus” she had. These songs summarize her worldview and were her touchstones. We were sent a brilliant beautiful angel. She was our light in our world.

14 “You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. 16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven. Matthew 5:14-16 New International Version (NIV)

The time has now come for her to hear her master tell her: 21 “Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’ Matthew 25:21 New International Version (NIV)



  • Memorial Service Saturday, July 14, 2018


  • Reception

Mang-So Tsoi-Pullar

have a memory or condolence to add?

Sitha Sam

July 13, 2018

Dear Mr. Pullar:

We are so sorry for your loss. We had no idea that she was even sick. She was always smiling and energetic every time we met, whether in the hallway or at events. What an amazing lady and what a remarkable life achievement. It was an honored to have met her. Praying that you and your family will find comfort in knowing that others are missing her as well.

God bless you and comfort you,

Sitha and family


1949 - Age 15






1949 - DGS Award