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Humps Restaurant serves its last meals

Clatskanie's popular Hump's Restaurant closed for good Sunday night after more than 50 years serving traditional family fare to supportive regulars and famished travelers.

Hump's original owner Forris Humphrey started the restaurant as a small coffee counter in downtown Clatskanie in 1948. She moved the restaurant to its current Highway 30 location in 1955.

Humphrey's daughter Pam Sellix, who practically grew up in the kitchen, and later worked in the restaurant, took over with husband Eric in 1978. The restaurant burned down in 1989, but the Sellixes rebuilt.

Both owners are now 68, and the toll of 14-hour days, seven days a week, had become too much. Their two daughters have their own careers.

The Sellixes have tried selling or leasing the restaurant since 2008, but there hasn't been a serious nibble. So for now, Hump's will close. The restaurant remains on the market, and the couple hasn't let any of its permits lapse, in hopes someone will show some interest in what could be a turnkey operation.

'We'd be open to most anything,' Pam Sellix said. 'We didn't want to retire this way. But as much as we hate to do it, we're doing it.'

Their customer base included generations of supportive locals, truckers and beach-goers, many of whom had a special relationship with the proprietors.

'We saw families grow up here,' she said. 'People who brought their children and grandchildren. Sometimes we didn't even know their names, but we knew them.'