JACKSONVILLE, Fla — After serving French-American food to the Jacksonville community for the past 17 years, downtown's The Magnificat Cafe announced it is permanently closing its doors on Friday.
Owners Benoit and Kathy Desclefs announced on Facebook that the coronavirus pandemic and the family's battle with cancer made it difficult to stay open.
"We gave it out best try," they wrote. "But we will not forget all the love and support from this great community."
The restaurant will be closing by end-of-business-day Friday, Aug. 28.
Last year, the owners said they were forced to put their restaurant -- located at 231 N. Laura St. near Hemming Park -- up for sale because of the entire family's battle with cancer: Kathy Desclefs was diagnosed for the second time in 2015; in 2019, her husband developed a brain tumor and their 17-year-old son, Luke, was also diagnosed.
"It's intense, it's been rough for [Luke]," she told First Coast News last December.
"We had the best customers in all of Jacksonville and it has been nothing but a pleasure to serve you over all these years," they wrote.
The Magnificat Cafe first opened in 2003.