Northumberland – John Richard Snyder, 67, passed away peacefully on Thursday, June 25, 2020 at his home. It is right and fitting that John’s final days were at 229 John’s Way, and at the home he built, surrounded by photographs of the people he loved most, his treasured artwork, and with a view of the landscape that he developed and tended since September, 1989. His wife since November 26, 1976, Toni was by his side.
John was born March 6, 1953. A lifetime resident of Northumberland, as a boy, John grew up on the corner of Prince and Third Streets. He attended Northumberland’s Second Street Elementary School, C.W. Rice’s Junior High School, and graduated from Shikellamy Area High School’s academic course in June, 1972. During his senior year (1971-1972) John became very interested in art, especially oil painting and pencil drawing. At age eighteen John won the 1972 Scholastic Art and Photography Gold Medal Award for his pencil drawing, “A Quiet Sunday”. This achievement motivated John’s decision to attend both Kutztown State College and York Academy of Art majoring in Fine Arts. After college John pursued his passion of art with private classes.
From 1977 to 2011 John owned and operated the John R. Snyder Construction Company where he specialized in new home construction, home remodeling, finished woodworking, cabinetry and ceramic tile installations. A work “perfectionist”, John responded to adverse situations positively and professionally with great appreciation to the importance of detail, accuracy, and precision. From May, 2011 to the present, John worked as a Signage System Specialist for Geisinger Health System, Danville, PA.
John was a third-generation tax collector. Currently in his third four-year term as the Point Township Tax Collector, John was following in the footsteps of his grandfather and mother. Growing up in the “family-business” John was instinctive at all related tax job duties, understanding, and first-hand knowledge during his tenure for Point Township.
In John’s lifetime he followed many ventures, had diverse interests, but perhaps the most fulfilling and gratifying for him personally was his “Mountain Greenery Tree Farm”. With the help of a few good friends, fifty-plus acres were hand planted with evergreen saplings. For many years that followed beautiful Christmas trees and John’s own one-of-a-kind wreaths were gifted to family and friends, and also available to any one that wanted to stop in at 229 John’s Way and “cut-down-your-own-tree”. This tradition lasted until 2017 when John’s illness prevented him from continuing.
In addition to his wife of 43 years, John is survived by his much-loved son and cherished daughter-in-law, Travis and Jennifer Fisher, who were literally John’s “pride and joy”. His family meant everything, every day, and in every way imaginable to his own personal happiness and well-being. He is also survived by his grandson Logan P.W. Fisher and granddaughter Lauren R. Fisher. “Pap” was the name given to John by Logan, and one Lauren soon repeated. John will forever be Logan’s and Lauren’s Pap. Whether it is celebrating their November and April birthdays, or during school and church events, or playing basketball or baseball games, or performing in dance recitals and musicals, or swimming at the pool, or watching Norry’s Halloween Parade or eating Thanksgiving dinner (Pap’s favorite), or decorating the family’s Christmas Tree, or whether at their graduations or their marriages, their Pap’s love will be never-ending and his presence will be with them always.
Marrying “Fisher” in 1976 came with immediate siblings, Jo, Keene, Burr, Quinn, and Tread Fisher. A family that to John were never “in-laws”, but always his own brothers and sisters. John was also a respected and admired “Uncle John” to Lea, Rayna, Derek, and Brandon Fisher. It was John’s great joy to watch them grow from childhood into their teens, and ultimately into the amazing and accomplished adults they are today. They will miss him tremendously. John will also be missed by Molly Sue, the kitten rescue, which held John’s heart from the moment he first saw her struggling to survive, early one rainy morning, in the middle of the road on his way to work to their last nap they shared together.
Friends and family may visit Monday, June 29th from 6pm-8pm at the Joseph W. Epler Funeral Home, 210 King Street, Northumberland. All attending are asked to follow the CDC guidelines for social distancing and wear a mask. A private funeral service officiated by Pastor Andrew Weaver will be held at the Priestley Chapel, Northumberland with burial in Riverview Cemetery immediately following.
Just recently, John was asked, “What is Heaven for you? What are you most looking forward to?” The expected answer was to “re-join my loved ones”, but without hesitation John’s reply was effortless “I want to paint”; and so on June 25, 2020 during a summer rain storm, from which appeared an amazing double-rainbow, Heaven welcomed its newest artist, John Snyder.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of John Richard Snyder, please visit our floral store.