Witham Restaurant opens doors for the last time

Witham Restaurant sign, located off of Biddle Rd. in Medford, Oregon. (Jennevieve Fong / News 10)

Witham Restaurant, a Medford truck stop restaurant, is operating for the last day on Wednesday, after serving meals to locals for 54 years.

It was an been an emotional day at restaurant, located off of Biddle Rd., for both regular customers and employees.

"I’m feeling very emotional," manager Brenda Francis said. "We’re all very emotional. This is family. It’s been very hard."

After announcing their initial plans to close, employees said they've witnessed a record-setting boom in business. However, that wave of customers came to the business a little too late.

Regular customers stopped throughout the day to have a final meal with their favorite servers.

Related | Say goodbye to Medford icon

With about ten employees left, some are struggling to find a new job, while others plan to follow the owners, Joe and Chris Stella, to their other businesses.

Francis said that it's the customers that she'll miss the most.

"We're just family," Francis said. "We know everyone practically that walks in here... Between us girls, we're really, really, really close."

Francis said the building will be "gutted", with all of the belongings sold or stored.

With new restaurants opening in town and restricted road access, the restaurant has had a hard time in the competitive market. Francis said "it's been a rough couple of years", but the closure of the gas station next door was "the last straw" in Sept.

The restaurant opened in 1964, with a grand opening in 1965. The business will be open until 8 P.M. Wednesday night.

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