LYNCHBURG, Va. (WFXR) — On Friday, the community gathered to say goodbye to a Lynchburg staple.

Country Kitchen has been in the community for 48 years, but on Sept. 1, the restaurant closed its doors. On Friday, cars packed the parking lot, and dozens of customers piled in to enjoy one last meal.

Bill and Doris Hawley first opened the restaurant in 1975, and since it has become a local favorite.

Rookie Wood who has been working at Country Kitchen for 42 years says it’s hard after seeing so many familiar faces from over the years.

“It’s been a nice run, but it’s time to go,” said Wood.

Owner Bill Hawley shared he is going to miss everyone who has been coming to the restaurant for several years.

“I’m a little upset and a little sad, but at my age, it’s time to get out,” said Hawley.

Now Bill is focusing on his retirement and will celebrate his 92nd birthday in October.

Customers pile into Country Kitchen restaurant to get one last meal on Sept. 1. (Jemon Haskins/ WFXR News)