A real life love story: Love from the ashes

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from ashes to love

He owns the Chicago bagel authority on the first floor– She is on the second, at the helm of Milio’s Hair Salon.

Two neighboring entrepreneurs who’s paths never crossed, until the day they would forever be altered..

“I got a call from my employees they said the fire department is here they’re running up stairs.”

“There’s smoke coming out of your windows, the fire department is here and they’re breaking into the studio – there’s definitely a fire.”

It was September 24th 2012; fire broke out inside a tanning salon at Belmont and Sheffield – causing heavy water and smoke damage to the two floors and two businesses below it, the damage to all three extensive.

The result of it: life changing.

“We cleaned up the store took out ceiling panels assessed it and thought we could be open in a few days not knowing what happened upstairs.”

“I said what, like two three weeks. They’re like no mam probably two three months I started crying I needed to use the bathroom.”

“And they said sorry your bathroom is destroyed but go downstairs and ask for Greg.”

“So I came downstairs, no makeup on, crying like hi can I please use your bathroom. Sure. Who are you?”

From that moment on, Greg Gibbs and Dalia Awdisho leaned on each other.

“We were doing the same things, we were calling insurance agents and I think sitting side by side.”

“Times along the way it was just so frustrating and so insurmountable and nothing was positive and there was no timeline.”

They spent time together rebuilding.  Reorganizing, and in just two weeks’ time. Dating.

“15 days.. 15 days 11 hours.”

“We left here to walk down to Wrigleyville and then afterwards we came back to get his car and his car was towed.”

“On the second date we were at the mall Woodfield Mall… We were at Ikea… Ikea… And there was a huge tornado.”

A few disasters and seven months later, Greg knew Dalia was the one– popping the question at the airport following her long solo trip overseas.

“I just showed up at the airport and proposed at the carousel.”

“He got on one knee and asked me to marry him– I heard people clapping around us”

Today both businesses are back open and recovering. While these two owners shift their focus to building a wedding, now just six months away.

“I’m kind of happy that it happened because I never would have met him.”

“I think I saw it happening exactly like this since the moment I saw you.”

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