George P. George

Dec. 29, 1924 April 15, 2013

George P. George, 88, passed away peacefully Monday at Freedom Village at Brandywine in West Brandywine surrounded by his family. He was a devoted husband, father, grandfather, patriot and restaurant owner committed to his family, his business and making other people feel good.

George was born and raised in Altoona, son of Peter and Barbara (Bitas) George. He graduated from Altoona High School in 1943 and worked in his father’s restaurant during high school until he joined the U.S. Army Air Corps. During WWII, he proudly served with his crew in the 38th Bomb Squadron, flying 37 successful missions in the Pacific Theater aboard the B-24 Liberator long-range bomber named “Punjab.”

In 1958, George married his best friend, Sara Grace Craine of Bellwood, and together they opened Texas Hot Dogs, the first drive-in restaurant in the area. Texas Hot Dogs became a landmark favorite for people in the area and across the state. George was admired for his high-quality food, special chili sauce, outstanding cleanliness and unmatched dedication to serving his customers. Texas Hot Dogs was visited by presidential motorcades and celebrities and featured for its unique success in national publications.

After retiring from the hot dog business, George served as a security guard at Penn State Altoona, where he was honored by the staff and students. In their retirement, he and Sara served for many years as volunteers at Altoona Hospital.

George is survived by his beloved wife of 55 years; his adored daughter, Sara Ann; his trusted son-in-law, John J. Armstrong; and his precious grandsons: John George Armstrong and James George Armstrong. George was graciously proud of his family’s accomplishments, including his daughter’s and son-in-law’s education and profession and his grandsons’ academic, athletic and musical endeavors. They ascribe their success to George and Sara’s instilled values of hard work, loyalty and determination.

George is also survived by his sisters, Niai Lamont and Christine Bettwy, and their children and grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his brother, Danny. He is also fondly remembered by his dog, Murphy.

A memorial service will be held at 3 p.m. Friday, April 19, 2013, at Freedom Village at Brandywine. A graveside service will be held at 11 a.m. Wednesday, April 24, 2013, at Logan Valley Cemetery, Bellwood. Friends and family are welcome at both events.

In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts in George’s name may be sent to the Downingtown Community Education Foundation, 540 Trestle Place, Downingtown, PA 19335, or to the Central Pennsylvania Humane Society, 1837 E. Pleasant Valley Blvd., Altoona, PA 16602.

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