Brevard County community mourns death of owner of Dogs R Us in Titusville

Chris Waag, 55, was killed late Saturday in a double-fatal crash

Chris Waag, 55, the owner of a popular restaurant, Dogs R Us in Titusville, was killed late Saturday (Lyn Dowling/Florida Today)

TITUSVILLE, Fla. – Chris Waag, 55, the owner of a popular restaurant, Dogs R Us in Titusville, was killed late Saturday in a double-fatal crash on State Road 46 near Geneva, where Waag lived.

“We’re heartbroken to have such a great owner not with us,” Dogs R Us general manager Vysion Sturgill said, still emotional two days after the accident.

The sign in front of the restaurant reads: “Chris, you will be missed by all,” according to News 6 partners Florida Today.

Saturday’s head-on crash, which involved two pickup trucks, happened about 11 p.m. near S.R. 46 and Prevatt Road in Seminole County, according to a Florida Highway Patrol report. Prevatt Road is roughly 1 mile west of the St. Johns River.

Waag and the driver of the other truck, an unidentified 23-year-old Mims man, were killed. Troopers noted it was unclear which vehicle caused the crash, which remains under investigation.

Monday morning, Sturgill posted a message on the restaurant’s Facebook page telling customers about Waag’s death.

“He was a great boss and owner, a loving father, husband and grandfather and the greatest friend to have,” the post said. “... To all of our customers we appreciate your business. The entire Dogs R Us staff will do our best to help Chris’s family thru this difficult time. We will cherish the memories we all have of Chris forever.”

The post elicited multiple comments expressing shock and sorrow and sharing stories about Waag’s kindness and generosity.

Condolences also came from throughout Brevard’s food community.

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“That is just horrific,” Gina Bach, owner of Tuscany Grill in Viera, wrote in FLORIDA TODAY’s Facebook group for culinary enthusiasts, “321 Flavor: Where Brevard Eats.” “(I am) so very sorry for his family and all those that knew and loved him. I never had the pleasure, but it sounds like he was a great guy.”

Added fellow member James E. Neumann of Cocoa, “(I) met him a couple of times (and he was) was friendly every time. So sad.”

Sturgill said Dogs R Us employees will celebrate Waag’s life at a time and date to be determined.

Kelly Fields-Mardis, who owns My Island and Merritt Island Pancake Houses with husband Steve and recently moved to North Brevard, said she and Steve will do what they can to help.

“We will stop by tonight or tomorrow to see if we can do anything,” she said. “Maybe we can pull the restaurant community together (to help). Doing the right thing isn’t something we should have to ask people to do. We just help our neighbors. If more did that, the world would be a better place.”

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