Ken and Tran Jeong | Source: Getty Images
Ken and Tran Jeong | Source: Getty Images

Ken Jeong's Wife's Influential Role in His Comic Career Journey

Milla Sigaba
May 22, 2023
10:34 A.M.

Ken Jeong and his wife, Tran Jeong, have supported each other through difficult times. She was his rock when he decided to leave medicine to pursue acting, and he was by her side when she was diagnosed with cancer with a survival rate of less than 30 percent.


Before the world knew and loved Ken Jeong for his comedic prowess and acting talents, he was an aspiring doctor from Detroit. However, thanks to his wife, the actor chased after his true calling.

But, when his wife was diagnosed with cancer, it was the actor's turn to be there for her. And after she beat the odds, her husband used his wit to sentimentally and humorously name one of his projects in her honor.

Ken Jeong at the Unforgettable Evening 2020 in Beverly Hills, California, on February 27, 2020 | Source: Getty Images

Ken Jeong at the Unforgettable Evening 2020 in Beverly Hills, California, on February 27, 2020 | Source: Getty Images

Who Is Ken Jeong's Wife, Tran Jeong?

While Ken was still fully practicing medicine, he met the love of his life, Tran, at a happy hour for young doctors. The pair hit it off immediately and decided to pursue the spark they felt. Both were working at healthcare provider Kaiser Permanente after the actor decided to move to Los Angeles.


A Vietnamese American, Tran is a family physician who said "Yes" when the actor popped the question. The couple tied the knot in 2004, and they have faced unimaginable challenges for many years, including Ken's tough rise to fame and success and Tran's grueling battle with cancer.


Tran Supported Ken in Making Transfer to Entertainment Industry

Ken spent many years working hard to become a doctor. However, one hobby he could never entirely ignore was his talent for entertaining and making people laugh. While still a medical student, Ken honed his skills by performing at open mic nights and emceeing the Comedy Spot Programming series on the Duke University campus in North Carolina.

Tran was breastfeeding their girls when she suddenly noticed a lump.

While studying for his degree, Ken never gave up on his passion for comedy; slowly but surely, he started to make his way into the limelight, and the one person who stood by his side, encouraging and cheering him on, was his wife.

Ken once revealed that before he finally made the massive leap from medicine to acting, he doubted his abilities and was hesitant to make a move. Trusting that her husband had what it took to beat the odds and come out on top, Tran urged her husband to go for it.


Reminding him of all the impressive things he had done and was yet to do, Tran gave Ken the push he needed. Thanks to her encouragement, the world has seen the actor's talent.


Tran and Ken Welcomed Twin Daughters Together

As Ken's acting and comedy career took off, his family also experienced growth. He and his wife welcomed their twin daughters, Zooey and Alexa. The actor is proud of his wife and never seizes an opportunity to celebrate her.

For Mother's Day in 2011, he decided to do something different from his acting roles. He became a contributor to Huff Post as he penned a heartwarming note from himself and their daughters. The actor was grateful to have her because, in 2007, not long after the arrival of their twins, Tran suddenly noticed a lump while breastfeeding.


A year after They Welcomed Babies, Tran Was Diagnosed with Cancer

A year later, Tran was diagnosed with cancer, leaving her and the rest of the family devastated. Ken was preparing to shoot "The Hangover" when they learned of Tran's illness. Wrought with many emotions, the actor nearly decided to drop out of the movie to focus on his wife.

Ever the supportive one, Tran encouraged her husband to go ahead and shoot the film, assuring him that she would be okay. She said:

"Ken was so strong for me. I really needed that. But, you know, I knew he was stressed out too."

While he was working, Tran was undergoing a series of treatments and procedures in the challenging fight to get her health back. Unfortunately, she was reportedly told that she had only a 23 percent chance of survival.


Fortunately, Tran started responding to the treatments, and by the time Ken was done filming "The Hangover," his wife was officially declared cancer-free.


In 2011 Ken Shared Tran Won the Battle with Cancer

On Mother's Day in 2011, Ken penned the most heartwarming love letter to his wife in a Huffington Post article. Detailing those challenging times when she fought and won against cancer, the actor praised his wife's strength and resilience. He wrote:

"In those two years, I fell in love with my wife all over again and discovered a deeper love and appreciation for her than I ever had. For that, I am thankful."

Ken's wife's cancer story continues to inspire all who hear it, and today, the couple happily raises their two daughters, Zooey and Alexa. The Jeong family makes a delightful bunch.


Appreciating His Wife Ken Credit Her in His Netflix Comedy Special's Title

In 2019, Ken's career reached new heights when he filmed his first Netflix comedy special. And seeing as the special was filmed at the Ice House in Pasadena, the comedy club where Tran first saw him perform, the "The Masked Singer" judge thought he would title it "Full Circle" or "First Date."

However, when Netflix executives asked the actor to "put a little more pop in the title," he—and Tran—came up with "Ken Jeong: You Complete Me, Ho."


Ho is Tran's maiden name, giving the humorous title a little more sentimental value than it appears to have at first glance. During an interview, Ken jokingly said:

"No, my wife is the one coming up with the copy for me. She deserves moral credit—not financial."

Tran also encouraged Ken Jeong to be part of the cast of "Crazy Rich Asians," co-starring Henry Golding and Gemma Chan. He revealed that it was "very important" for him to be a part of the film due to its significance in representing the Asian community.

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