What is: a Texaco gas station with a white Pontiac out front, the ghost town of Glenrio, TX
What was: The Texaco station was built by Joseph (Joe) Brownlee in 1950 on Route 66 at a time when Glenrio, TX was often bumper to bumper with traffic. Interstate 40 opened in 1973 and by 1975, Glenrio was on its way to becoming a ghost town as everything closed up.
Roxann Bownlee, daughter of Joe, grew up helping her father at the gas station. It was a family enterprise. In 1970, Roxann married Larry Lee Travis. With the decline of business in Glenrio, Larry rented the Standard Service Station near Adrian, Texas and each day drove the 25 miles to Adrian in his white Pontiac.
At the time, a group of gas, shop and service station owners had banded together as a vigilante force to patrol the streets of Vega and Adrian. On March 7th a 23-year-old Texan called Lewis Steven Powell entered the Standard Service Station. No-one knows what happened in those few minutes, whether Larry – proud of his hard work – refused to hand over his takings, but Powell made him kneel down and shot him in the back of the head before robbing the till.
Larry never came home, but his Pontiac Catalina did, and it keeps silent sentinel in Glenrio. Roxann still lives in the house behind with family and dogs, one of the few remaining resident of Glenrio.