Summit Inn: Historic Route 66 Roadside Diner Destroyed in California's Blue Cut Fire

Summit Inn: Historic Route 66 Roadside Diner Destroyed in California’s Blue Cut Fire

A fast-moving wildfire in the Inland Empire in California left a trail of destruction along Interstate 15, including leveling a historic Route 66 diner which in its heyday was frequented by Elvis, John Wayne, and more of Hollywood’s elite.

The iconic Summit Inn diner, located in Oak Hills along the Cajon Pass, was a popular roadside destination for people traveling from Los Angeles to Las Vegas since the 1950s.

The vintage building’s signature red neon “Summit Inn” sign would flash on and off, beckoning drivers along Interstate 15 to stop in for a bite to eat or visit the gift shop full of memorabilia.

It is now in ashes.

“It is beyond comprehension how this could possibly happen,” reads a message posted on the diner’s Facebook page.

Ten tables full of customers and a half-dozen employees fled the restaurant around 3:30 p.m. Tuesday when firefighters told them they had to leave. The restaurant was destroyed just hours later.

The Summit Inn, which opened in 1952, was visited by both tourists and celebrities alike. Elvis Presley, John Wayne and Pierce Brosnan are just some of the famous faces that have visited the diner.

“Elvis stopped at the restaurant and kicked the jukebox when he didn’t see any of his records,” owner Katherine Juarez said.

Juarez said the family plans to visit the site Wednesday to see what memorabilia can be salvaged.

She said that the diner was insured and that the family hopes to rebuild.

Check Also

Texas Gunman Broke Skull of Infant Stepson in 2012 Assault

Texas Gunman Devin Patrick Kelley Broke Skull of Infant Stepson in 2012 Assault

Before a gunman entered a rural Texas church with a ballistic vest and a military-style rifle, killing at least 26 people on Sunday, he was convicted of assaulting his wife and breaking his infant stepson’s skull. In 2012, while stationed at Holloman Air Force Base in New Mexico, Devin P. Kelley, 26, was charged with “assault on his spouse and assault on their child,” according to the Air Force.