Across the region, and the country, peopled watched as news cameras captured the landmark
"I saw it on television and I just couldn't believe it," said
Nordmann, and a crowd of fellow lovers of the diner -- known for its ostrich egg omelets, ostrich burgers and buffalo steaks -- held a memorial and fundraiser on Saturday at its burnt-out footprint.
About three dozen classic cars and motorcycles were on display as well as several food trucks willing to give up a portion of their proceeds to help come up with the money to rebuild the historic building.
He was in
"At first I didn't believe it because the fire was in the southern part of the (
Conkle was so moved, he immediately took to his computer and created an obituary for the restaurant that sat at the top of the pass on the east side of the northbound 15 Freeway.
Over the years celebrities were among the highway travelers to eat at the
The community reaction to the loss of the restaurant was so visceral that it caught new owners,
"I knew this was a close-knit community, and even before the fire, people would come to meet me because they wanted to say hello to the new owners of the
Recinos sat with former owner,
"Right now we're dealing with the insurance company, but we're fighting," Recinos said. "Were fighting and all of these people helping us out, they're our gloves. We aren't in this fight alone."
The siblings vowed to rebuild and hired crews to begin cleaning debris as soon as they were able to get onto the property.
However, they hit some snags, according to
The site had been contaminated, so an extensive cleaning had to be done to the property.
"And we did that," Colombo, of
Colombo was hopeful, though, that the money necessary to complete the project will be raised. He added that he's already had a lot of input from people about what they would like to see done to the property.
"We've had people in the community express how they'd like to see it rebuilt, the
"I'm so overwhelmed and grateful," said Recinos-Juarez. "And I'm glad we will be back."
(c)2016 the San Bernardino County Sun (San Bernardino, Calif.)
Visit the San Bernardino County Sun (San Bernardino, Calif.) at www.sbsun.com
Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.