Children of Durham coffee shop owner killed in blast: ‘He had the biggest, purest heart’

Durham County News

DURHAM, N.C. (WNCN) — The children of the man killed in Wednesday morning’s gas explosion in downtown Durham shared a message on Instagram Friday morning.

Kong Lee’s children, Diana and Raymond, posted a photo on Instagram Friday morning to thank everyone for the outpouring of support and to show their love for their father.

Lee was the owner of Kaffeinate, a coffee shop located at the site of the blast at 115 N. Duke St.

“He had the biggest, purest heart out of anyone we know,” the children wrote of their father. “The family we created at Kaffeinate made him so happy. We watched your smiles give him strength and joy.”

Diana and Raymond went on to thank their customers and those who have shown their support in recent days.

“Thank you to the EMS, firefighters, police and everyone else who helped during the crisis.”

Lee, 61, was the only person to die in the explosion. There were 25 others injured, including a firefighter who underwent surgery Wednesday and was expected to be released Thursday.

There were no new victims found in Thursday’s search, Durham Fire Chief Robert Zoldos said.

According to Zoldos, Lee didn’t want to evacuate his shop during the time of the morning gas leak that led to the explosion.

Zoldos said Thursday afternoon that fire officials were in the process of finding a police officer to enforce the evacuation order when the explosion happened.

Here is a link to the GoFundMe for the Lee family.

Here is a link to the Bully City Rebuilds GoFundMe campaign.

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