Born and raised in Seattle, Dr. Hoy lives on Beacon Hill. He gives the following account of his family history and how he became interested in medicine.
My Chinese name is 許振華, Hoy Jinwah. Jinwah means Beauty through Action. My parents believed that if I want results I have to work for it. My surname means Promise. I also speak Taishanese, Cantonese, some Mandarin, and Spanish to help patients who need to communicate in these languages.
As a fifth-generation American, I have been China three times, on holiday, each time staying for a week or two. The first time was to Macau and Hong Kong in 2007. The second time in 2011 was to see the highlights of the country in the cities of Beijing, Shanghai, Hangzhou, Suzhou, Wuxi, Nanjing, Guilin, Yangshuo and Xi’an. In 2015 I went to Guangzhou, Xinhui, Taishan, Kaiping, Zhuhai, Macau and Taipei.
My father was part of a pioneer Chinese American family. My paternal great-grandfather was born in San Francisco. His son my grandfather was a Chinese-born American citizen who served in the United States Army in World War I. He also worked for Senator Warren Magnuson, with whom our family kept in touch. My grandparents owned a laundry on Fourth Avenue South and South Washington Street in Seattle. I had the opportunity to visit my father’s house in Xiheli, Xinhui, where he lived until after World War II. My father was a very educated man who came to the U.S. after World War II, studied the culinary arts in technical college here in Seattle, and helped people to open and run restaurants.
My maternal grandfather lived in a village in Taishan, Guangdong Province called Ningmei. He went to Malaysia to study dentistry, then returned to Chonglou, Taishan to practice. I visited both my grandfather’s village and the dental office where my mom was born. The office and home is now a tea shop. My mother had aspirations to be a nurse, but instead moved to Hong Kong, then to the United States after marrying my father.
My grandfather was a dentist, my mother wanted to be a nurse, and I am a physician and surgeon of the foot and ankle.
I wanted to be a physician since high school, like my family doctor, who was well-liked in the community. At the University of Washington, my pre-medical advisor informed me about the different types of medical schools. I visited a podiatrist, who performed reconstructive foot surgery, and became interested in offering specialty medical care.
My parents were very proud of me and sacrificed a lot for me to become successful. My father felt medicine was a right fit for me because I have a good heart, and wanted to visit my medical school before he died. My mother helped me as much as she could day to day to encourage me to do my best. My family’s love and legacy still to this day encourages me to excel.