Pick’s owner dies in blaze

MORRISTOWN – Pick’s Place, a popular restaurant and bar located east of Morristown along U.S. 40, burned to the ground Sunday morning, leaving its owner dead.

Morristown Volunteer Fire Department Chief Doug Harris said the call came in just before 6 a.m.. When his department, as well as firefighters from Belmont, Bethesda, Lafferty and Cumberland Trail arrived on the scene, the building was fully engulfed.

“The sheriff’s department was here, at the scene, when we arrived and (the fire) was cranking pretty good when we got here,” Harris said.

Harris said crews removed “one victim” from the structure.

The victim was identified as Pick’s owner and operator Sophia Brewster. She was 84 years of age and owned the establishment for 56 years.

Brewster, who was the only owner the business ever had, resided in an apartment, which was built onto the back of Pick’s Place.

The cause of the fire and where it began are still being investigated with assistance of the Ohio State Fire Marshal’s office.

“We’re not sure how long it’ll take to determine a cause or how long they’ll be on scene,” Harris said. “At this juncture, we’re going to continue to work on it until they’re satisfied.”

Harris indicated he had no reason to believe there was any sort of foul play involved with the case of the blaze.

The chief said Pick’s Place was considered to be a Morristown “institution” by many.

It was a very popular hangout for many, especially during the summer months. It’s fairly close proximity to Jamboree In The Hills made it a popular stop.

Many high-profile country music stars actually stopped and played Pick’s Place over the course of time. David Allen Coe is said to have gotten his start at Pick’s Place.

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