The owners of a family-owned Franklin Street business died in a head-on car crash last week.
Dhruva Chellani and his son, Kris, were the owners of Classic Carolina, a UNC-themed apparel shop at 171 E. Franklin St.
Dhruva and his wife, Nina, and Kris were driving home on Sept. 6 when they were killed in a car wreck, according to a Classic Carolina Facebook post. Nina was taken to a nearby hospital and is in stable condition, according to the post.
A GoFundMe for the family has already raised more than $55,000 from more than 700 donors.
“The sudden and unexpected loss of Kris and his father has left their family not only emotionally devastated but also facing the overwhelming burden of funeral expenses, outstanding bills and the uncertain road ahead,” the GoFundMe post says. “As a community, we have the power to come together and provide much-needed support during this incredibly difficult time.”
Classic Carolina was originally called Classic Fashions and opened in 1993. It mostly sold women’s apparel before 2012, according to the business’s website.
“Many students loved our UNC dresses and anything UNC we had since it was unique and different than anything they could find at other UNC stores,” Classic Carolina’s website says. “We started slowly transitioning to more and more UNC apparel after 2012, as we noticed more demand for it. We expanded our UNC apparel from dresses to classic shirts, funny shirts, jackets and accessories! Now our entire store is UNC blue!”
Kris was in the process of taking over the store from his father, according to the business’s Facebook page. A grand re-opening of the store was planned for Saturday.
“Kris and his dad worked extremely hard to renovate the entire store and give it a complete makeover,” the Facebook page says. “They had many exciting plans set for the success of Classic, and it’s very devastating to have had to cancel the grand re-opening and keep the store closed indefinitely.”
We're sad to report that Dhruva and Kris Chellani, owners of Classic Carolina, lost their lives in a car accident this week. Our thoughts are with the Chellani family and their Classic Carolina family. Please consider donating to the GoFundMe https://t.co/SgSjKT18z5
— Downtown Chapel Hill (@DCHP_ChapelHill) September 9, 2023