Family of Slain Ethiopian Couple Keeps Dallas Restaurant Going

“People do ask, ‘How are you able to be in here,' ” says Tizeta Getachew, sister of one of the slain restaurateurs. “If we had that mentality, we’d be paralyzed at home, not able to do anything.”

Dallas News

By JENNIFER EMILY Staff

The tale of the Dallas Ethiopian restaurant Desta is one of tragedy, hard work and, ultimately, of love.

Husband and wife owners Yayehyirad “Yared” Lemma, 40, and Yenenesh “Yenni” Desta, 31, were shot and killed in 2012 by a customer who became obsessed with Yenni Desta. Their killer was convicted last December and will spend his life behind bars with no chance of parole.

The story — and perhaps the restaurant — could have ended with the brutal killings on the couple’s front porch. But their family — mainly Lemma’s two sisters — keeps Desta operating with the same love and hard work, hoping to create a legacy for the young son, now 3, that the couple left behind.

“This is not our story,” said Lemma’s sister Tizeta Getachew, who left her job running a domestic violence shelter to manage the restaurant. “This is their story.”

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