It’s a relatively small loss in the scheme of things. But many Route 66 enthusiasts still were deeply disappointed to learn Monday four window panes that spelled “CAFE” at the long-abandoned Longhorn Cafe in Glenrio, Texas, recently were stolen.
Nick Gerlich noticed the missing glass during a visit to the Route 66 ghost town along the Texas-New Mexico border.
He said in a Facebook post he saw no evidence of broken glass at the scene, leading him to deduce the panes were carefully removed and pilfered.
Below is the photo he posted Monday.
The restaurant — along with many other businesses in the small town — has been abandoned for at least 35 years after Interstate 40 bypassed the town.
A handful of people still live in Glenrio, so it’s not bereft of residents. Regardless, it seems a minor miracle those windows hadn’t been shattered by vandals or storms long before now.
Longtime roadie Gary Daggett echoed the thoughts of many when he commented:
I knew this day was coming but I’m still in shock. I figured we would find them broken one day from some young kids who know not what they do . But stolen grrrrrr that’s worse.
Dozens of people already had commented on Gerlich’s post by late Monday. Hope exists social media — with a bit of a boost from this story — will enable someone to track down those window panes and nab the culprit.
If nothing else, a lot more people will be one the lookout on eBay and at antique stores for four particular pieces of glass.
This episode also serves to remind Route 66 travelers to take plenty of photographs during your journey. The things you admired might not be there the next time you visit.
(Image of the Longhorn Cafe window in 2006 by Emily Priddy; image of the Longhorn Cafe window in 2017 by Nick Gerlich via Facebook)