Augustus Samuel Mein-Sun Lee was born in San Francisco on August 8, 1946, the only son of Tsung-Chi Lee and Da-Tsien Tsu. His three sisters had been born in mainland China and accompanied his mother on the difficult trek across China to India and then to the United States in 1944. There, the family rejoined Tsung-Cbi, wbo had once been a major in the Kuomintang army and who, since 1939, had been working in San Francisco for the Bank of Canton. When Gus was only five, his mother died of breast cancer, and his father, two years later, married a severe Pennsylvania Dutch woman. Gus grew up in the Panhandle and the Haight, a predominantly African American area of San Francisco, and he had a difficult time becoming accepted. He joined the Young Men's Christian Association (YMCA) and learned to box.
Asian American Novelists: A Bio-Bibliographical Sourcebook
Emmanuel S. Nelson
Hawley, J. C. (2000). Gus Lee. In E. S. Nelson (Ed.), Asian American Novelists: A Bio-Bibliographical Sourcebook (pp. 185-191). Greenwood Press.