Thuy Trang Dies in Auto Accident

Yellow Ranger in Mighty Morphin Power Rangers (1993).

Thuy Trang
Thuy Trang

Thuy Trang was born on December 14, of 1973 in Saigon, Vietnam. Her father was a soldier in the south Vietnamese army and after the fall of Saigon in 1975 to Communist forces, he traveled to America to seek political asylum. He was forced to leave his entire family behind. In 1979, when Thuy was only 2 years old, she and her family left Vietnam by secretly boarding a cargo ship bound for HOng Kong with hundreds of other persecuted South Vietnamese refugees, in hopes that they would eventually be able to travel to America. Thuy almost died on the ship from lack of food and water. The family was taken to Hong Kong and then to live in a detention camp there. Thuy’s family was finally reunited in California in 1980, and when she was 9, her father had her begin the study of kung fu. Her father died of cancer in 1992.

Thuy graduated from Banning High School and earned a scholarship to study civil engineering at UC Irvine. Her father and siblings were into engineering, but in 1992, she became interested in acting after a chance run-in with an agent in Hollywod. In 1993 she got her first big break when she landed the role of Trini Kwan, the Yellow Ranger on the hit TV series, Mighty Morphin Power Rangers (1993).Over 500 girls auditioned for the part. In 1994, Thuy left the show to pursue other projects including focusing on feature films. Children of Merlin was one of those projects, which would have included others from the Power Rangers TV series, but it never came to fruition.

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She continued acting and appeared in a video documentary called the Encyclopedia of Martial Arts: Hollywood Celebrities (1995) (1995), and was interviewed by James Hong about her life, here acting and her martial arts. She then got a cameo as a manicurist in Spy Hard (1996). Her next big role was as one of the lead villians, Kali, in The Crow: City of Angels (1996) (1996), the sequel to The Crow (1994).

Thuy Trang studied Shaolin Kung Fu and shared that it was her study of kung fu that helped built her character and made her a stronger person, teaching her respect, discipline, patience, perseverance and endurance.

Tragically, on September 3, 2001, 27 year old Thuy Trang was killed in an automobile accident while a passenger in a car traveling on the I-5 near San Francisco, California. She was traveling with former actress/model Angela Rockwood, and another bridesmaid for Angela’s then-upcoming marriage to Dustin Nguyen. The other bridesmaid was driving and lost control and the car eventually plunged over the bank. The resulting accident was fatal for Thuy and left Angela a quadraplegic. The driver survived the accident.

Thuy Trang left behind only a small body of work, but through that work, she leaves behind a large lasting impression on others.