Pauline M. “Polly” Kunkle Wurtz

September 16, 1911 ‒ April 15, 2004

Mansfield, Ohio

MANSFIELD: Pauline M. “Polly” Kunkle Wurtz, 92, of Mansfield, died Thursday afternoon, April 15, 2004 in Winchester Terrace following a long illness.

She was born September 16, 1911 in Peru, Indiana, to George O. and Elizabeth (Saylar) Burdine, and was graduated from Butler High School.

A lifelong Richland County resident, Polly opened her restaurant The Atmosphere at U.S. 42 and S.R. 97 east of Lexington and operated it from the mid 1950’s until it was destroyed by fire in the early 1960’s. She relocated The Atmosphere to a Lexington Avenue location (now LA Hair Force) and operated it until the mid 1960’s.

Polly then served thousands of meals from the historic Malabar Inn, retiring from full-time restaurant service in 1976. She continued to dabble in commercial pie baking for restaurants and retail, renown for her patented “Polly Kunkle’s Grasshopper Pie”.

She was a member of St. John’s United Church of Christ, Ruth Chapter Order of Eastern Star, and Mansfield Commandery #21.

Polly had served as past secretary of The Ohio Restaurant Association, and had received the Association’s “Distinguished Service Award”.

She is survived by two sons and daughters-in-law Lowell D. and Beverly Kunkle and Lawrence D. and Judy Kunkle all of Lexington; four cherished grandchildren and their spouses Cindy and Steven Krock of Ontario, John and Patty Kunkle of Johnsville, Pam and Dave Ault of Mansfield and Paula Kunkle of Lexington; nine adored great grandchildren Ashley, Emma, Corey, Kyra, Paul, Chelsea, Micah, Tyler, and Brady; and numerous nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her first husband Dale William Kunkle in 1984; her second husband Howard O. “Al” Wurtz in 1992; a great grandson Brandon Ault in 2001; four brothers Frank, Art, Roy and Jim Burdine and three sisters Evelyn Meekins, Delia “Deed” Miu and Hilda Jones.

The family will receive friends Sunday, April 18, 2004 from 2-6 pm in the Lexington Avenue Snyder Funeral Home, where an Eastern Star Memorial Service will follow at 6 pm. The funeral service will be held Monday at 10:30 am in the funeral home. The Rev. Lon McSherley will officiate. Burial will follow in Mansfield Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, Polly would have preferred memorial contributions to the Scholarship Fund of the Mid-Central Ohio Restaurant Association, and may be made at the funeral home.

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