Obituary: Eloise Ruth (Edson) Snyder

Eloise Ruth Snyder
Eloise Ruth Snyder

Eloise Ruth (Edson) Snyder

Eloise was born on October 5, 1921 on the southern Nebraska plains in Red Cloud.  Her paternal grandfather was a pioneer Baptist minister.  Her maternal grandparents had arrived by covered wagon to claim a homestead on the Platte River awarded for service in the Civil War.  She was born to William and Eva Lois Edson, who operated a newspaper in Red Cloud (and other Nebraska and Iowa communities later).

She graduated from Eldora High School (IA) and Hastings College (NE) and in 1949 was married to a college classmate, Richard Snyder.  They raised two sons, David and James (d. 2008).  At the time of Dick’s death in 1982, he was President of Scientific Systems Support, a computer systems company in the medical field.  She lived in Milan from 1975-85 and in the Ann Arbor-Ypsilanti area most of the time from 1961 to 2009.

She is survived by her older brother William Edson of Minneapolis, her son David Snyder of Okemos, six grandchildren:  Katrina Snyder of Sellersburg (IN), Jamey (Michele) Snyder of Saline (MI), Tonya (David) Foote of Cullman (AL), as well as Jennie, Evan and Lindsay Snyder, all of Okemos (MI).   There are also twelve great-grandchildren.  She is also survived by a nephew, John (Arlys) Edson and daughter Lia of Plymouth (MN).

Most of her employment was in journalism working in the Midwest states on newspapers and magazines, including the Chicago Tribune and City News Bureau of Chicago, and periodicals for boaters and educators.  Volunteer work included development of adult education programs at a small college in Appalachia and a women’s prison in the Blue Ridge Mountains.  She loved to write, both professionally and for her own enjoyment.  She wrote a treasure trove of stories and vignettes about her life, family, and the people around her.  She earned a Master’s Degree in Gerontology from the University of Michigan.  Following that, she served for eleven years at the University as Publications Director for the Institute of Gerontology, retiring in 1985.

Actively interested in the social issues of her day, Eloise served in groups such as the original Advisory Committee to Affirmative Action Programs of the University of Michigan, Milan (MI) Public Schools Committee on Integration, and the Milan Area Committee on Aging.  She was also active in PEO, a women’s organization, where she was a seventy-year member.

She died on October 13, 2014 at age 93 at home in Burcham Hills, East Lansing (MI) where she had lived for the past five years.  She lived a healthy life until shortly before her death, involved in family activities, concerts at MSU, and Burcham Hills activities.

A memorial service is planned for October 26, 2014 at People’s Presbyterian Church in Milan, MI at 3:00 p.m.  Memorial contributions may be made to Aid in Milan, PEO Projects, or People’s Presbyterian Church in Milan.


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