Ronald Snyder ’61

Ron Snyder was supposed to be in class on Wednesday morning. He got a call from Western Washington University telling him he had missed the class he was auditing. Sunday night, when sitting with friends at his dinner table, he said, “I love to learn. I like taking classes. I like learning new things.” At 79, he planned to take piano lessons: “I always wanted to play the piano,” he said simply, and that was that. That’s who Ron Snyder was: plain spoken, matter of fact, and committed to walk the path God had given him. But Ron could not go to class on Wednesday, because he went to his final rest lying next to his beloved wife of 50-years, Marty, who wants the world to know he was the best God had to offer, and the world was blessed to have him. Ron is survived by his wife, Marty, daughters Susan Brouwer, Kristen Rossey and her husband Bill, Sarah Hughes, and Emily Archambault. Everyone knew Ron loved his children and his wife, but nothing surpassed the joy and delight brought by his grandchildren (Jon Brouwer, Matthew Rossey, Katelyn Hughes, and Luke, Seth, Ethan, and Hannah Archambault). It comes as no surprise that he loved children, for his life has been about giving hope to the young people around him. Born on November 28, 1938, Ron lived his life in Kalamazoo, Michigan. After completing his undergraduate at Hope College and his Masters Degree in Social Work from the University of Michigan he worked as a Supervisor at the Child Welfare Office in McComb Co. Ron and Marty married in Birmingham, MI on April 15, 1967. They moved to Kalamazoo where Ron worked as the Chief Psychiatric Social Worker for the Child Guidance Clinic. In 1974, Ron along with Marty moved with their close friends Bernie and Mary Brower and Steve and Linda Tamminga to form Manna Farm, where they live in community today. The farm is a picture of Ron’s love and vision: everyone who came was welcomed and left as a friend. He not only knew his neighbors, but he loved and cared for them as if they were his own: opening the doors of his house, taking dinner to a friend, and loaning his truck and tools without question. Ron spent 30 year’s of work as the first Social Worker at the Bellingham Whatcom County Health Dept administering the Children with Special Needs and the Maternal Child Health Programs. Ron’s love for his family was only surpassed by his love and faithfulness to the Lord. A Sunday School teacher and elder at First Reformed Church, his counsel was wise and without judgment. Ron was preceded in death by his parents and brother Dick. He is survived by brother Jim and wife Sharyn of Indiana, and sisters Janet Champanois, and Karen and husband Wayne DePree, and sister-in-law Marty Sult all of Michigan. You are invited to join family and friends for Visitation on Sunday, December 17, 2017 from 3:00 to 5:00 PM at Gillies Funeral Home, 202 Front St., Lynden. Funeral services will be held at 1:00. on Monday, December 18, 2017 at First Reformed Church in Lynden, Washington. Memorials can be directed to Bethany Christian Services or Lighthouse Mission. Please share your memories and condolences in the online guestbook at Arrangements are entrusted to Gillies Funeral Home and Cremation Services of Lynden.

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