Echo Park — Where did she go? For nearly five years customers who pulled into the United Oil gas station had been greeted by a mermaid. She floated with other underwater creatures in a mosaic mural at the front of the station. But now, the mermaid and the rest of the mural are gone.
The mermaid made her debut when United Oil took over the station and convenience store at Sunset Boulevard and Portia Street and remodeled it with a colorful underwater motif. The idea was that of owner Jeff Appel, whose chain of service stations are known for taking an artistic and whimsical approach to gas station design.
The mermaid by the front door was inspired by Appel’s niece, Chelsea. A designer who worked with Appel said the station’s underwater theme was “inspired by his love of the ocean.”
But last week, when Eastsider reader Robin Blackman stopped by for gas, she noticed that the gas station mermaid and the rest of the mural were gone.
When The Eastsider inquired about the fate of the mermaid, one clerk said he didn’t know. The Eastsider contacted United Oil for info but has not heard back.
There is a second mermaid inside the station, floating above the soda machines. But it’s just not same as having a mermaid smile at you while pumping gas. Good luck to you, gas station mermaid.
- More Echo Park stories
- Got a story, tip, question or photo to share? Submit it here
The Eastsider’s Daily email digest includes all new content published on The Eastsider during the last 24 hours. Expect the digest to land in your in email in box around 7 p.m. It’s free to sign up!
Once you submit your information, please check your email box to confirm your subscription.