Adi family sells downtown businesses, facing 'bittersweet' life after deportation


YOUNGSTOWN

Back in 2011, downtown Youngstown was a shadow of what it is today.

The revitalization that’s taken place in recent years began with a handful of business owners who invested in downtown.

Among them was Amer Adi Othman, known locally as Al Adi, who opened Downtown Circle Convenience and Deli on West Federal Street in 2011. In 2015, he opened an adjoining hookah bar.

Now, 71⁄2 months since Adi was deported to Jordan, he and his wife, Fidaa Musleh, have decided to sell their downtown businesses. Musleh announced the news in a Facebook post Wednesday and one of the couple’s four daughters, Lina Adi, confirmed it to The Vindicator.

Adi was deported at the end of January after a lengthy fight to stay in the U.S., where he lived for nearly 40 years.

After Adi exhausted all of the legal avenues available to him, U.S. Rep. Tim Ryan of Howland, D-13th, sponsored a private bill that prevented Adi’s deportation. The situation changed under President Donald Trump’s administration when deportations were no longer delayed because of a private bill.

Now, Musleh is preparing to move there permanently.

Daughter Lina said the decision to sell the family’s businesses is “bittersweet.” The family will be scattered, and everyone is adjusting to the life changes they’ve faced, she said.

Musleh concluded a Facebook post with this: “You all have been the most beautiful part of our journey and we will never forget you. My husband and I have always had a vision for Youngstown, we’ve always seen the potential and the heart of this city. Our wish for Youngstown is that it continues to grow, flourish and become the place we all know it can be.

“Thank you for everything.”

Read more of their story in Thursday's Vindicator or on Vindy.com.

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