The good news flashed through town last week: Fong’s Hand Laundry, which has been a fixture of downtown Rye since 1958, is not closing after all. In an interview with Eric Moy, who recently survived a life-threatening health scare, he said the business will continue under his management, with the help of his parents, Sam and Lili.
Eric was in the hospital in early January when his parents announced that they were retiring and closing the business at the end of February.
Doctors had told Eric they would not be able to resolve a blood disorder that was affecting his lower legs. “I was sent home from the hospital and told to say goodbye to my wife and kids,” he said.
After Eric did just that, the doctors informed him new antibiotics had affected his blood work and led them to mistakenly conclude he would not survive.
But after Eric recovered, he talked at length with his parents about staying open. “I said, ‘Dad, it’s not like our business is dying, we still have a good business,’” Eric recalled.
Eric is enthusiastic about continuing a business that’s been in his family for three generations. “While this chapter ends, a new one begins,” he said.
It’s unclear if Fong’s will remain at 36 Elm Place, where it has operated for the last 55 years, because the family is planning to sell the building. But Eric said they plan to stay in Rye.
“Our legacy and name belong in Rye,” he said. He said he and his family are very grateful to the Rye community for its warm support.
Eric and Sam Moy outside Fong’s