Family's Hunt for Justice Honors Man of Character

Ronin Su and Ada Chan i i

Ronin Su (right) recently talked with his girlfriend Ada Chan about the death of his uncle, Jae Sang Kim. hide caption

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Ronin Su and Ada Chan

Ronin Su (right) recently talked with his girlfriend Ada Chan about the death of his uncle, Jae Sang Kim.

Jae Sang Kim i i

Jae Sang Kim owned Song's Grocery in Atlanta for more than 15 years. One year ago, he was shot and killed during a robbery at his store. He was 56 years old. hide caption

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Jae Sang Kim

Jae Sang Kim owned Song's Grocery in Atlanta for more than 15 years. One year ago, he was shot and killed during a robbery at his store. He was 56 years old.

Kim and his daughters as children i i

Jae Sang Kim stands with his daughters in a photo taken when they were children: Hee Jin Kim (left, now Hee Jin Cayetano) and Ha Yun Kim (right). hide caption

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Kim and his daughters as children

Jae Sang Kim stands with his daughters in a photo taken when they were children: Hee Jin Kim (left, now Hee Jin Cayetano) and Ha Yun Kim (right).

During the Korean War, Jae Sang Kim's older sister carried him in her arms to safety behind South Korean lines. He would eventually make his way to Atlanta, where he put aside dreams of becoming an artist and instead, became the owner of a grocery store.

How to Help

If you have information about the death of Jae Sang Kim, call Investigator D. Wilson of the Atlanta Police Department at (404) 853-4235 Ext. 45417.

One year ago, Kim was shot in the back during a robbery at his store. He died shortly after.

His nephew, Ronin Su, talks about his uncle's death with his girlfriend, Ada Chan.

Su was traveling abroad when he found out that his uncle died. Since then, he and his family have worked tirelessly to find justice for Jae Sang Kim. They've raised a $25,000 reward for information about the crime, and they have distributed tens of thousands of fliers to find his killer.

"I still can't forget the picture of my 68-year-old mother risking four lanes of traffic…" Su says. "Jamming [fliers] inside of car windows as they would pass by, nearly getting run over … and saying to people, 'He was my brother.'"

The search for Kim's killer has brought some comfort to his family. It seems everywhere they take the fliers, somebody recognizes his photo and fondly remembers the man who owned Song's Grocery. They'll tell a story about him and comment on his strong character.

"Only in his absence does it become revealed what an integral part [of the community] he was," Su says. "Maybe doing all the things we did has given a sort of dignity to his death that was greater than just dying on the floor of a store."

Each Friday, Morning Edition airs a story from StoryCorps, the oral history project traveling the country to collect stories and memories from everyday Americans. Copies of the interviews are also archived at the Library of Congress.

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