Aquebogue resident, Wanda Wittmeier, retired owner of Modern Snack Bar, died May 15, 2014. She was 91.
Wanda was born in Newtown Upper Falls, Mass. on Dec. 12, 1922, to Adolph and Natalie (née Breitenbach) Mattis. She went to school in Newton, then spent time in Europe with her parents, where she met her future husband, John. They got married and had their son, Otto in 1940 while living in Europe. She came back to this country in 1946 to start a new life for her family.
Wanda worked in Massachusetts for a while before moving to Aquebogue. She worked as a seamstress for Bon Marches in Riverhead. In 1952, Wanda went to help her sister Lillian and her husband at the Snack Bar that they owned at the time. She retrained from being a seamstress to becoming a cook, hostess and waitress. In 1956, Wanda and her husband (who had been working on a farm), purchased the Snack Bar from her sister and brother-in-law. Wanda and John extended the menu, serving hot meals, sandwiches, salads and homemade desserts. The Wittmeiers added a kitchen and dining room. The place grew, and they changed the name to The Modern Snack Bar.
Despite Wanda and her husband’s meager beginnings, they worked hard. “She was determined to make the restaurant a success,” said her son Otto and his younger brother, John. After graduating from college, Otto worked for Howard Johnson’s Restaurants, where he was vice-president of special concepts and John was a manager for Ground Round. In 1989, both sons came home and took over the business.
Wanda was also instrumental in helping her husband build the Aquebogue Mobile Home Court. She enjoyed whatever she did and loved to sew, knit and crochet.
She was predeceased by her husband and is survived by Otto and his wife, Stacy; John and his wife, Patricia; five grandchildren, Jordan S., Pamela, Emma, Lily and Claire Wittmeier and three great-grandchildren, Jordan C., Christina and John Patrick.
The family received visitors May 18 and 19 at Reginald H. Tuthill Funeral Home in Riverhead. A funeral service took place May 20 at Old Steeple Community Church in Aquebogue. Burial took place at Aquebogue Cemetery.
This is a paid notice.