Noel Toy, known also known as the "Chinese Sally Rand" , was born in San Francisco on December 27,1918 as Ngun Yee . She was the first born of eight to Cantonese immigrant parents, who open a laundry service in Inverness, California where the family were the only Chinese family in town.
In 1945 she met and married soldier and character actor Carleton Young when he saw her perform and then fell head over heels in love with Noel at New York's Latin Quarter. The couple had no children and were married until Carelton's death in 1994.
Noel Toy performed her burlesque routines at the Stork Club and other venues in New York before returning to San Francisco where she was most famous at the Forbidden City nightclub, which was compared to an Asian-American Cotton Club and was also the inspiration for the musical and the film Flower Drum Song .
In her later years, Noel Toy worked as an actress with small parts in television and film , including a role in Big Trouble in Little China and frequently portrayed Korean village women in the series M*A*S*H .