Obituary of Andrew Sua Sun Yee
“All of our dreams come true, if we have the courage to pursue them.”
- Walt Disney
Our lives changed forever on Thursday, May 27th with the passing of our beloved Andrew Sua Sun Yee. A man like no other, Andy was known for his vision, charisma, and drive, as well as his generosity, big heart, and his deep commitment to family and community. He lived life everyday to its fullest, dreaming big and determined to leave no stone unturned.
Under Andy’s leadership and vision, the Bean Restaurant Group was established and, as they say, the rest is history. Together with his family, with whom he was lucky enough to work every day, they developed a series of restaurants devoted to his father, Johnny Yee, the founder of the original and iconic Hu Ke Lau Restaurant. These include Johnny’s Bar and Grille, Johnny’s Tavern, Johnny’s Tap Room, and Johnny’s Roadside Diner along with IYA Sushi & Noodle Kitchen, and the Halfway House Lounge. If juggling pu pu platters, bar food, and sushi was not enough, he decided to take on the schnitzel by forging a strong partnership with Peter Picknelly and the Vann family to purchase the landmark Student Prince and The Fort in downtown Springfield. Andy’s vision and hard work was instrumental in bringing Fort Street back to life. If that wasn’t enough to oversee, Andy then took on Union Kitchen, the Boathouse, the Wurst House, and most recently the historic White Hut. No one loved a good hot dog more than Andy Yee! Andy would always say, “the way to everybody’s heart is through their stomach.” He loved delicious food, being with his customers in his restaurants, and seeing them enjoying their experience. If things would get busy, Andy would roll up his sleeves and get into the action because that’s what he knew best.
Andy loved to be active in the restaurants with his chefs, managers, and employees. So many people can thank Andy for giving them their first job and investing confidence and belief in them. He knew the success of the restaurants was due to their hard work and commitment. He had a sharp attention to detail (including spotting a lightbulb that was out in any of his restaurants), could remember everyone’s name, and treated all with respect. He loved to mentor, coach, and encourage people to follow their dreams and to teach those who wanted to learn about the hospitality business. Recently, Andy was instrumental in helping to establish the Tigers Den at South Hadley High School, a culinary program that offers internships and hands-on learning for students.
Andy would always say he was blessed with the most beautiful family. He leaves his mother, Linda (Mark) Yee; siblings Anita Rondeau (Don), Edison Yee (Audrey), Nicholas Yee (Tami); aunts Anna, Annie, Bonnie, and uncle Billy; and in-laws Robert and Elizabeth Maloney, and brother-in-law Bo Maloney (Liz). He also leaves several nieces and nephews—Sarah, Hannah, Sean, Jonathon, Nathan (godson), and Grace—and a big crew of cousins with whom he made countless memories. Recently, Andy celebrated 20 years of marriage with his beautiful and devoted wife, Sarah Maloney-Yee, renewing his love for her on top of Stratton Mountain. Together, they created their own loving and modern family with Andy’s two children, Tiffany and Matt (Jamie), and their two daughters, Bella and Emma. Andy was also blessed with one granddaughter, Sophia. He adored the family’s two rescue dogs, Daisy and Penelope.
Andy loved his trips to Disney, Rosemary Beach, ski trips to Chamonix, British Columbia, Colorado and Stratton, Oktoberfest in Munich, seeing the Masters at Augusta, and countless cruises because Andy loved a good buffet. The common denominator in all of this is that Andy always made time for his family and friends, creating endless memories, making sand castles that were the envy of everyone on the beach, and cooking the most amazing meals and his signature wings for all to enjoy. It was his way of sharing and receiving the love of those he was with. He didn’t want to miss the events that were important to his children, like field hockey games, theater performances, and morning school drop offs. A kid at heart, Andy would always introduce himself to everyone as the fun dad. You could find him flying at full speed down his street on various sets of wheels, dressing up for Halloween, dancing, and singing his favorite Disney tunes. He loved to capture all of these moments over the years on video and in photos.
Andy always said that “hugs are good for the heart.” Up until the end, his heart remained very strong—full of so much love for those he adored and for those who adored him. Our hearts are broken but forever impacted because of the strength and quality of the love he gave.
The family wishes to thank Dr. Phil Glynn, Nurse Kelly O’Brien—whom Andy referred to as his angel on earth—and the entire teams at Sister Caritas Cancer Center and Mercy Hospital’s ICU for their compassionate care of Andy over the last four years until his final day.
Calling hours will be held at Beers and Story, 646 Newton Street, South Hadley on Wednesday, June 2nd from 2:00-8:00pm; the Funeral Mass will take place at St. Theresa’s Church, 9 Parkview Drive, South Hadley on Thursday, June 3rd at 11:00am. Following the Mass, Andy will be interred at Evergreen Cemetery. For those wishing to attend the Funeral Mass remotely please visit https://client.tribucast.com/tcid/4503841107.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Sister Caritas Cancer Center at 271 Carew Street, Springfield, MA 01104, or the Andy Yee Memorial Scholarship fund ℅ Westfield Bank, P.O. Box 1626, Westfield, MA 01086.To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Andrew Yee, please visit Tribute Store