Broadway community sings farewell to beloved Korean owners of a NYC deli

Broadway community sings farewell to beloved Korean owners of a NYC deliBroadway community sings farewell to beloved Korean owners of a NYC deli
A TikTok video of New York City’s Broadway community singing farewell to the Korean owners of a beloved sandwich shop in the city’s theater district has gone viral. 
Starlite Deli was opened in 1984 by Jung Min Kim, 71, and his wife, Jahee Kim, 63, after moving to New York from Seoul in 1981. After 39 years in business, Jung Min, who has woken up at 4:30 a.m. every day to operate the deli, is now retiring.  
“I worked really hard before, but I just can’t do the same,” Jung Min told NBC News. “I tried saving my business, too, but no one was willing to take over my deli. So I just decided to retire. Now, Dunkin’ Donuts is going to replace our shop.”

Over the years, the sandwich shop, located on West 44th St., became a staple of the Broadway community, serving performers like Philip Seymour Hoffman, Ralph Fiennes and Ian McKellen.
On April 29, the Broadway community gathered outside Starlite Deli to hold a proper farewell to the beloved shop and its owners. 
In the TikTok video, the community can be seen singing Roy Rogers’ “Happy Trails” and gifting the Kims a poster filled with messages from people they have nourished over the years. They also collected over 300 donations, raising $17,839 as a retirement gift for the couple. 
“I never think about this kind of moment in my life so I will never forget this moment,” Jung Min says. “I really appreciate everybody. Thank you very much.” 

The Kims are now looking forward to enjoying their retirement traveling and spending time with their family in Syosset, Long Island.
“We’re free now. My husband can rest and we can be free together. We can eat brunch with the kids together. It feels really good,” Jahee told NBC. 
The TikTok video of the farewell has garnered nearly 3 million views, with viewers expressing their love for both the business owners and the Broadway community.  
“Not me crying over two strangers and a deli I’ve never been to,” one user wrote.
“That’s the American dream. This is what America is supposed to be,” another user said.

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