ROSEVILLE (CBS13) — It was a tough day for friends of Stephen Pease and fellow businessmen as they learned the owner of Sammy’s Rockin’ Island Bar & Grill was found dead in the Pacific Ocean.

“One part of me was relieved that there could be some closure, but I was still just taken aback by the whole situation,” said Wendy Gerig with the Roseville Chamber of Commerce.

Pease was last seen in Las Vegas at the end of October, and his credit card showed him checking out of a motel in Fort Bragg on Nov. 3.

He was one of the leaders of the revitalization of downtown Roseville, but he stopped making payments on the restaurant’s loan. He owed $9,000 when he disappeared on Halloween. He was identified in part by the serial number on his hip implant.

“In terms of where we go from here, we just don’t know yet,” said Howard Rudd with the Roseville Community Development Corporation. “Is there a way we can help Jon Yip in the process of reopening, and maybe financially restructure something? We don’t know yet.”

Rudd adds there’s interest from others to take over the space since most of the improvements had already been done inside.

While a new tenant may occupy the space, business leaders hope they can find someone with the same passion Pease had for Roseville.

“I’m hoping there will be a new champion for downtown that will step up and ensure that Steve’s dreams become a reality,” Gerig said.

The Sammy Hagar-themed restaurant is going through default proceedings, and there is not timetable on if or when it would reopen.


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