Life Story / Obituary
Reflecting on the life of David Snider, words such as hard-working, resilient, and loyal come to mind, yet the word that paints the most vivid picture of him is selfless. Possessing a generous heart, he loved to help any family member or friend in need. A lover of the outdoors, he spent a lifetime of camping, fishing, and hunting. He leaves behind a wonderful collection of fond memories shared over the years for his many close friends and family to treasure for generations to come.
Not much could be said about the 1940s without some reference to WWII. In fact, June 6th of 1944 was the war’s most notorious day, D-Day marking the end of the war in Europe. During that same year, Lester and Wilhelmina (Steinke) Snider welcomed home their newborn son, David Morris, on December 28th in Greenville, Michigan. Joining his older brother Dennis, his birth brought great joy and happiness to the family home.
Growing up in Gowen, Michigan, David lived a typical childhood of the times. His father was a farmer who supported the family through his work as a tool and die maker. His mother worked at the local Gibson Refrigerator as well as the post office in town. By the early 1960s, his mother’s idea of building a golf course came to fruition. Over the course of the next couple of years, David and his family, as well as a couple of his high school buddies, helped to develop what would be known as the Brookside Golf Course in Gowen.
Graduating from the Class of 1963 from Greenville High School, he set off for Central Michigan University to pursue a secondary teaching degree. After completing his education, David accepted a position teaching both history and sociology at Greenville High School. During his two years there, he was well-liked by the staff and students alike and his love of history remained essential to him for many years.
Not to be forgotten, however, was the meeting of the woman who would change the course of his life forever, Margaret “Robbie” Snider. She was most certainly the only gem he ever studied in the geology class they shared together! One blustery winter day the two of them struck up a conversation while sharing notes from a class she had missed. Afterward, he volunteered to drive her back to her dorm across campus and the rest was history! Eager to spend their lives together, the two of them joined in marriage on June 25, 1966, and settled in Bass Lake before later moving off Lafayette Street in Greenville. During their early years together, they welcomed home their newborn daughter, Robin before moving to the Fruitport area where their daughter, Rebecca, and son, Eric completed their family.
Driven as well as determined, David wanted nothing more than the very best for his family. Working as a substitute teacher during the day, he joined his brother in developing the Fruitport Country Club extending himself long into the evening hours as well as weekends. By the early 1970s, their doors opened and the business became his primary means of supporting his family. He and Robbie built their first home on South Quarterline Road just off the 13th hole where they raised their children. The years at the golf course called for many early morning hours watering, mowing, and fertilizing ensuring the grounds were in impeccable shape. David was known to tend to every need of the business before returning home after sundown.
As the children grew old enough, they too, came to work at the business where employees were treated like family. He and Dennis were known for hosting large employee cookouts and many of their workers returned season after season. The customers also returned and continued their league play as well as their time back in the clubhouse to connect with their favorite groundskeeper! David and Robbie made many lasting friendships at FCC where they remained for more than forty remarkable years.
In addition to his hard work at the golf course, David enjoyed many special pastimes. He was an avid hunter who enjoyed many years traveling to his aunt and uncle’s property in Howard City as well as the beautiful spot just west of Escanaba that he and Robbie leased for many years. The family remembers many years of camping together. Starting out in tents then moving to a truck topper and eventually to a larger motorhome, they shared many wonderful memories on the road to destinations such as Beulah, Michigan, Cedar Point, and along the east coast including sites in Pennsylvania and Washington D.C. The family also enjoyed a memorable trip down Highway 1 from San Francisco to Los Angeles and several visits to the Disney parks in Florida. Later, he and Robbie traveled by motorhome to countless places including Thousand Islands, New York; several trips to Marathon in the Florida Keys, various stops along Route 66, many area casinos, and more recently to North Carolina to visit their dear friends, Fran and Kate Larsen.
Along with hunting and camping, David enjoyed many years fishing the waters close to home including Muskegon Lake and Lake Michigan as well as Sturgeon Bay and a favorite spot, Put-in-Bay of Lake Erie. He also treasured adventurous trips to the remote fly-in Favourable Lake, near the Manitoba border of northwest Ontario known for its walleye and trophy northern pike. Usually joined with his good fishing buddies, no matter where they ended up there was always a good story and plenty of laughter that filled their day! Over the years, David hosted countless fish fries of the best perch, walleye, or trout in town!
Never one to remain idle, he continued his passion for home building by later designing their current home on Hickory in Spring Lake. He and Robbie fashioned every detail including a special room for fish cleaning and a sewing space for Robbie. Later, he was the primary excavator and contractor for his daughter, Becky’s home that was adjacent to their property. This allowed for frequent visits by his granddaughters who formed a path between the two homes. David and Robbie’s home was always a welcoming place for many of their special friends as they both enjoyed entertaining. David loved to cook and guests were such to never go home hungry! He loved to test out new recipes or special twists on ones that he had saved over the years. Known for his savory Swiss steak, fried rice, or delicious lamb, fixing and preparing food became his specialty. Friends were known to stay and play cards and listen to his amusing jokes and stories well into the evening hours. Friendships were very important to the two of them where they were known to be regulars with their Friday night group at Joe Chan’s for more than thirty years! More recently, he and Robbie joined Nortonville Gospel Chapel and were beginning to make lasting friendships there as well.
Described as a man of his word, he lived his life with integrity and grit. A family man through and through, David’s greatest legacy will be the family he so loved. He wanted nothing more for them to share a lifetime of happiness and success and to know Jesus. Thankful for the countless lives he touched, there is no doubt that he will be greatly missed by his special friends and loved ones. May they trust that David now rests in peace and his memories will live on in their hearts forevermore.
David M. Snider, age 74, of Spring Lake relocated to Heaven on June 24, 2019. David is survived by his beloved wife of 53 years, Margaret "Robbie" Snider; his three children; Robin Hampton, Rebecca Antekeier, Eric Snider, and their children, along with spouses and significant others, as well as his great-grandchildren and 'like family' Ablao family. According to his wishes cremation has taken place. David and Robbie are members of Nortonville Gospel Chapel 14528 Leonard Road, Spring Lake, Michigan 49456 where a Celebration of Life Service will be held on Tuesday, July 16, 2019, at 6:30 p.m. Pastor Joe O'Neill officiating. The family will meet with friends at the church from 6:00 p.m. until the time of service at 6:30 p.m. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be directed to Nortonville Gospel Chapel.