BAR HARBOR – Lenora Elaine Snyder (nee Grapes), 91, died Feb. 23, 2017, in Bar Harbor. She died as she lived: true to herself, serving her God, and inspiring her family.
She was born Sept. 14, 1925, in Augusta, W.Va., to Matilda (nee Gray) and Roy Montgomery Grapes. Lenora was the devoted wife of the late Jack Russell Snyder for 62 years and the loving mother of four children: Dewey (Dan) White of Bellingham, Wash.; Diehl M. (Susan) Snyder of Bass Harbor; Deidre (Michael Bagu) Simpson of Philadelphia, Pa.; and D. Russell Snyder of Tallahassee, Fla. She enjoyed her role as a dedicated grandmother to Luke, John, Flannery, Emma and Jordan, and was the proud great-grandmother of Brigid, Kellyann, Kay Susan and Natalie. Lenora was preceded in death by her brother Wallace, killed during military service in Italy in 1944, her sister Margel Grapes Kesner of Frostburg, Md., and her brother Robert Grapes of Romney, W.Va.
Lenora truly excelled in her educational pursuits. She was the valedictorian of her graduating class at Romney High School in West Virginia, she earned superlative marks at Catherman’s Business School in Cumberland, Md., and 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, Lenora 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, Fla.
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.
Arrangements by Jordan-Fernald, 1139 Main St., Mount Desert. Condolences may be expressed at www.jordanfernald.com.