On Wednesday, March 23rd as dawn was breaking in the small back yard of Gloria Pat Snyder, winter was slowly receding as Spring raised her head. Pat’s children hovered around her sensing that these were the last moments with their mom. The smell of coffee and the fatigue from a long night and a long journey circled the room. Every breath was labor for Pat, yet she rallied and hung on for a few more hours. It was the afternoon before she breathed her last and let go of this world to embrace all the love, joy, and healing that her new life held for her.
Pat Snyder was born on July 15th, 1930, in Woodward, Oklahoma. At the tender age of three weeks old in a Ford Model T, her parents, Millard and Grace Harper, and her older sister, Beverly, set out on their adventure to Oklahoma City.
Even though Pat had one sister and no brothers, she was her father’s “boy.” If our beloved Pat had been a boy, his name would have been Patrick. Her nickname became Patsy.
Pat attended Classen High School and in 1948 went on to OU as a business major, getting a degree in Secretarial Science. Her dad provided her with one year of college tuition. She then went on with a scholarship and worked 40 hours a week in the dorm to complete her degree.
In 1952, Pat was reunited with Jim Snyder, a former High School classmate. One weekend when Jim was on leave a friend arranged a blind date. She and Jim married eight months later. They had four children, 16 grandchildren and 28 great-grandchildren. Their quiver was full. “Psalm 127:4-5” Pat and Jim’s family was their most prized possession.
They moved to Yukon in 1961, establishing Yukon’s first supermarket, becoming a chain of six stores known as Snyder’s Foods.
Pat was born with a passion for all things art. As a young child, she found joy in sketching and creating art. She professionally started showing her work at various art shows and galleries. In 1975 she showed at Norman Wilks Gallery and did so for the next 35 years. Her works were hung in galleries in Santa Fe and Taos. She showed her work in Howell Gallery for ten years until her retirement. Her home was always filled with children, food, and art. She painted everything, but she especially loved figurative paintings. She loved sketching and painting her children and grandchildren. Her special joy was the thirty-year tradition of her Christmas painting that became her coveted Christmas card.
Pat’s heart was always for her community. She was quick with a word of encouragement and a table full of food. She loved people and was loved dearly. She said, “I love Yukon. I wouldn’t leave it for anything. It’s my home, my comfort, and my joy. I love everything about it.”
Her faith permeated her very soul, and she led her family as a Godly matriarch. She was a light for her community and a beacon for the love of God. The Bible verse that best reflected Pat is, “Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her: “Many women do noble things, but you surpass them all.” Proverbs 31:28-29.
Pat was preceded in death by her husband of 53 years, Jim Snyder. Pat is survived by her sister, Beverly Kroutil Yates, and her four children: James F. II and his wife, Linda and their four children, Matt, John, Hannah, and Tristan; Dr. Tom and his wife Susan and their four children, Patsy, Charles, Sally, and Clay and their 13 grandchildren; Kathy Whitson and her husband Rodney and their four children Shannon, Michael, Trey and Emily, and their 10 grandchildren; Kim Carter and her husband Craig and their three children, Jack, Jessica and Harper, and their four grandchildren.
Celebration of life services will be held at Covenant Community Church, 2250 Yukon Parkway, Yukon at 2 pm on Friday, April 1st, 2022. Family visitation will be Thursday, March 31st, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Yanda & Son Funeral Home.
We would like to send a special thank you to the precious women who cared for our sweet mom, Donna Fulton of Southern Skies Home Care and Lisa Bailey, of Accentra Hospice and to Mom’s special friend Dale Willhite.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Central Park Fund at Spanish Cove Retirement Village.
Online condolences may be signed at www.yandafuneral.com. Arrangements are under the direction of Yanda & Son Funeral Home and Cremation Services, Yukon, OK.