SANDY, Utah — Megan Chan, the owner of Chef Ming in Sandy, said she’s not a stranger to racist remarks, but in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic Chan said the remarks are especially hurtful.
“Everybody that comes in here is kind of like family,” said Chan.
It’s been that way between Chan and her customers for the past 15 years, and even though COVID-19 has forced the restaurant to close its doors, Chan is still taking takeout orders over the phone.
“It doesn’t matter what race you are right? We’re all affected by this,” said Chan.
One customer of 10 years ordered his regular meal, then Chan said he asked her for a “case of coronavirus.”
“I was so shook,” said Chan. “I looked at him like, 'What? We don’t have that here.'”
Customers have even asked her daughters if they have the virus, or if they’ve been back to China recently.
“Just because we’re Chinese doesn’t mean we have it,” said Chan.
In fact, all of Chan’s family has lived in the U.S. for decades. The province they’re from in Mainland China is called Canton, or Guandong Province, which is an 11 hour drive from Wuhan.
Jordan Frkovich has been friend’s with the Chans for six years.
“Why do we have to turn against each other when we need each other most?” said Frkovich.
When he heard of Chan’s troubles, Frkovich rallied their Sandy community together to show their support.
“We are all not that way, we are better than this,” said Frkovich.
Seeing her community come to her restaurant doors in support has helped Chan feel better about the situation.
“I’m really happy that there’s so many people out there that are supporting us and not everyone is racist,” said Chan.
Once COVID-19 is over, Chan wants have a large community gathering—symbolizing they made it through this together.