Metro

Man killed by car in East Boston ran restaurant, merchants say

A man fatally struck by a vehicle on Saturday night at a busy East Boston intersection was the proprietor of a local Korean restaurant, neighboring business owners said.

They identified the victim Monday only as Mr. Kim, the affable owner of Orient Heights Korean Japanese Cuisine in the area of Saratoga and Bennington streets, where the fatal crash occurred.

Authorities have not formally identified the man, who was struck at the intersection around 10:15 p.m. Saturday. The driver remained at the scene and has not been charged.

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Kim’s restaurant was closed Monday afternoon, and a makeshift memorial of candles, flowers, and a balloon was visible.

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A message on the balloon read, “We Love You.”

Maria Kenney, owner of Cambio Latino grocery store two doors down, said Kim sometimes came in to her shop to watch soccer games on a flat-screen television on the store wall.

“He was very friendly,” Kenney said, adding that her business closed about an hour before the crash Saturday.

She said she was shocked to learn Kim was the victim.

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An employee at another nearby business, El Paisa Butchery, said she and Kim bonded over their shared Korean heritage.

The woman, who declined to give her name, said she thought Kim was in his 50s or 60s. He sometimes bought vegetables from her store, she said.

Occasionally, the woman said, she would see Kim taking a cigarette break outside his restaurant.

“Too sad,” she said of the fatal crash. “He was very nice.”

The woman said her sister had informed her of Kim’s death, and her initial reaction was, “Oh my God, I can’t believe.”

Travis Andersen can be reached at tandersen@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @TAGlobe.