Merrimac, MA — David R. Mathews, longtime Merrimac resident, died peacefully Friday morning, on his 89th birthday at the Winnisquam Lodge at Riverwoods in Exeter, N.H. He was the beloved husband of 67 years of Dorothy L. (Olsen) Mathews.
Born in Lynn, June 7, 1924, he was the son of the late Nelson H. and Clara E. (Burns) Mathews, and was a graduate of St. Joseph Institute of Lynn, Mass. Soon after graduation, he entered the military, serving with the U.S. Navy from May 11, 1943, until his honorable discharge on November 28, 1945. He was part of the D-Day Invasion, and his ship the USS Ancon, served as the press ship at the formal surrender of Japan in Tokyo Bay on September 2, 1945.
In 1947, he helped his sister Dorothy and brother-law, Skip Meadows, open Skip’s Snack Bar in Merrimac, never dreaming that it would become a Merrimac landmark, known throughout the greater area for its famous burgers and even more famous Suzie- Q Potatoes.
Dave and Dottie purchased Skip’s in the 1950’s, and continued to operate the business until their retirement in 2002.
He prided himself in knowing his customers and was well respected by his employees for always being a kind-hearted, caring and very generous “boss.” The business he nurtured throughout his life is now being carried forward by his daughter, Lori and husband, Rob, who are upholding the same high standards of excellence upon which it was founded over 66 year ago.
He will be remembered as a hard-working man with a great love for what he did, and enjoyed fishing, boating, golf, and traveling. Above al,l he enjoyed spending time with his family.
In addition to his wife, who worked side by side with him, he is survived by his two daughters, Patricia Mathews of Newton, N.H., Lori Mathews and husband, Robert, of Merrimac; along with several generations of nieces and nephews; and many dear friends and fond acquaintances around the world.
ARRANGEMENTS: Visiting hours will be held Tuesday, June 11, from 4 to 8 p.m., at Paul C. Rogers & Sons Family Funeral Home, 36 West Main Street, Merrimac. Funeral services and interment in Locust Grove Cemetery, Merrimac, will be private for the family. Donations in his memory may be made to The American Heart Association, 20 Speen Street, Framingham, MA 01701.