Jerry Kiang, the owner of a Chinese restaurant in Vienna who was threatened with deportation from the United States, has just received his INS green card, making him a permanent legal resident.
"I feel very good," he said recently. "It's a relief."
Although Kiang, a native of Hong Kong, had lived in the Washington area for 10 years, the Immigration and Naturalization Service ordered him deported last fall because he did not have a green card.
Kiang's dispute with the INS attracted local attention because he is well known in Vienna and because deportation would have meant leaving behind his restaurant, his siblings and his elderly mother, who does not speak English.
The first of Kiang's family to come to the United States was his father, Yu Win Kiang, who arrived from Hong Kong in the early 1970s, searching for a better-paying job.
In 1976, when it was learned that the elder Kiang was dying of cancer, his family was granted special permission to join him here. Together, they opened the House of Mandarin restaurant in Vienna.
The father sought green cards for them all. When Yu Win Kiang died in 1983, Jerry Kiang was the only family member who still did not have one, and he was ordered by the INS to return to Hong Kong.