Raleigh entrepreneur with Down syndrome trying to open coffee shop finds true love

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- It's a story of true love that's capturing the hearts of thousands, a long-distance bond between Gabi Angelini and Nick Doyle.

Angelini is a young Raleigh woman with Down syndrome behind Gabi's Grounds Coffee Shop.

The local coffee shop would work to employ and support other people with disabilities.

Learn more about Gabi's Grounds Coffee Shop

Nick lives in Canton, Ohio but met Gabi at the National Down Syndrome Conference in Detroit last April.

They stayed in contact, then reconnected at the next conference in Pittsburgh and have had a long-distance relationship since then.

A video of the two hugging at an Ohio airport has gone viral and ABC World News Tonight featured a story about the couple's love story in the past week.


Nick is visiting Gabi in Raleigh and ABC11 caught up with the two lovebirds at Saints and Scholars in North Raleigh as they were doing karaoke Wednesday-- a night after the Carolina Hurricanes featured them on the Jumbotron kissing.


Nick a stand-up comic for the Ohio-based improv group the "Improvaneers" which has a cast comprised exclusively of people with Down Syndrome.

"She is beautiful, she's outgoing and we love to go out and have fun," Nick said.
Gabi said, "He is my everything and he is handsome and adorable-- we are meant to be."

Gabi has fought against all odds to open her own coffee shop with the help of her mother Mary.

Eventually, Larry's Coffee started producing Gabi's own brand of beans and sells them in local grocery stores. Back in November, they held a fundraiser at a Raleigh piano bar and their GoFundMe continues to grow with the goal of opening a coffee shop.

Mary said that's not too far off.

"The world tells you what you can't do," Mary said. "It's a constant at school-- you can't do this math, you can't do this. It's always can't, can't stay, so this is like you can. The business is happening, the love of her life is happening so I think she's a shining example for other parents and other people everywhere: She gives us hope."

The coffee shop is set to open in an undetermined location in North Raleigh.
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