Lenora Elaine Grapes Snyder, 91, died on Thursday, Feb. 23, 2017 in Bar Harbor, Maine. She died as she lived: true to herself, serving her God, and inspiring her family.
Born on September 14, 1925 in Augusta, she was a daughter of Matilda Gray Grapes and Roy Montgomery Grapes.
She was preceded in death by her husband of 62 years, the late Jack Russell Snyder; her brother, Wallace, who was killed during military service in Italy in 1944; her sister, Margel Grapes Kesner of Frostburg, Md.; and her brother, Robert Grapes of Romney.
She truly excelled in her educational pursuits. She was the valedictorian of her graduating class at Romney High School and she earned superlative marks at Catherman's Business School in Cumberland. She later graduated summa cum laude with a B.S. and earned an M.A from Frostburg State University.
In 1945, she traveled by train from Washington, D.C. to El Centro, Calif. to be married. Her professional life had two main phases, the first of which began at the Celanese Corp. in Cumberland and continued at the Department of Defense in Washington, D.C. Her second career was as an English teacher at Beall High School in Frostburg. Her drive and steadfastness in returning to school and pursuing a teaching career in mid-life was atypical for the times and remains an inspiring example to this day.
She retired to Leesburg, Fla. in 1983; Jack and Lenora relished their years together in Lake County until Jack's death in 2007. A highlight of those years was her more than 3,000 volunteer hours with the Leesburg Regional Medical Center Auxiliary. As a widow living independently, she appreciated the support of her friends and benefited from her participation in many activities at both Hawthorne Village and at the Southpointe Baptist Church in Leesburg, Florida.
Throughout her life Lenora enjoyed books, movies, needlework, quilting, scrapbooking, travel, and family celebrations — especially the annual weeklong family reunions at Ormond Beach, Fla. She was also a skilled tailor and a talented cook and host. As parents and educators, Lenora and Jack instilled a respect for knowledge and a love of travel; they embodied the phrase “live and learn.”
Wherever she lived — West Virginia, California, Maryland, Florida, Pennsylvania or Maine — Lenora was always a source of encouragement to her kinfolk and her circle of friends.
She is survived by her 4 children, Dewey (and Dan) White of Bellingham, Washington; Diehl M. (and Susan) Snyder of Bass Harbor, Maine; Deidre (and Michael Bagu) Simpson of Philadelphia, Pa. and D. Russell Snyder of Tallahassee, Fla.; her grandchildren, Luke, John, Flannery, Emma, and Jordan; and her great-grandchildren, Brigid, Kellyann, Kay Susan, and Natalie.
Condolences may be expressed at www.jordanfernald.com.
Arrangements by Jordan-Fernald Funeral Home on 1139 Main St. in Mt. Desert, Maine.