Devastated Asian Business Owner Looted & Won’t Reopen
June 3, 2020
The GoFundMe page is at the bottom of this article
First-generation Korean-American Hak Tong Kim lost everything Sunday night when looters ransacked his clothing store, City Fashions on King Drive in Chicago. The store had been opened for nine years.
“I [sic] lose around $350,000,” stated Kim to NBC5 Chicago. “I’m so unlucky. I don’t have insurance. I have only liability.” Looters even made their way downstairs to the basement and smashed Kim’s new cash register, he recently purchased and was about to install.
“I was so upset. I’m so sad. I explain to them, ‘please, don’t break the window. This is a small business. I’m the owner here,’” Kim explained. He stood by the broken window for hours with a wrench in hand, begging looters to leave his store alone.
Kim was only able to hold off the looters until 8 pm. That’s when crowds began to dangerously outnumber him and his family begged him to leave the store, which he finally did. Once Kim left, he could see dozens of people storm into the store from the parking lot and take hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of merchandise.
According to Kim’s family, he’s been working seven days a week at the store since it opened nine years ago. His daughter wrote a gut-wrenching post on social media.
“My dad helplessly watched City Fashions being overrun and looted, and my uncle was assaulted by a huge crowd ransacking. Although they were able to arrive home safely, they are completely devastated. My first generation Korean parents worked blood, sweat and tears to establish a proud business of their own. They’ve never closed during the holidays and always believed that business would prosper, even through many trying times. My dad, who’s always been an optimist, told me today that the gives up. Seeing my parents defeated and in despair breaks my heart.”
Kim does not have plans to reopen, but his community is coming together to help him, regardless. They also set up a GoFundMe page to raise money for Kim’s losses. The link for that page can be found HERE
“It is devastating to see this senseless thing happen to him. I think it’s really important at this point that we help him so he can have hope back,” stated Kim’s pastor, Major Michael Cho.
According to NBC5 Chicago, Major Cho and the Salvation Army are assessing the damage and trying to find solutions to help local business owners who were hit by the recent string of vandalism and looting.