This one is personal: A. Boyd Snyder

November 2, 2007 at 6:38 am 2 comments

My wife’s grandfather passed away earlier this week.  One of the stories I remember most is this one:  as he was coming in for a landing in Europe (England?) the fog rolled in and he could not see very well.  Just before getting to the landing strip, he clipped a tree and “landed” his PBY upside down.  We’ve heard it a thousand times from other pilots, and sure enough he said “Any landing you can walk away from is a good one.”  My wife’s “Poppy” was a neat guy to hang around with.  I will miss him.

 A. Boyd Snyder

A. Boyd Snyder Jan. 1, 1919 – Oct. 30, 2007 Resident of Concord Allen Boyd Snyder, 88, died peacefully at his home in Concord on October 30, 2007. Born to Fannie and Walter Snyder in Cle Elum, Washington, Boyd graduated from Roosevelt High in Seattle. Always an A student, Boyd enrolled at the University of Washington where his father ran the Maintenance Department. During his school years he worked in his uncle’s cabinet shop and developed an affinity for woodworking. The war interrupted his studies and he entered the Navy as a pilot. Requesting duty as a sub chaser in Alaska he was instead assigned to the Caribbean where he flew a variety of aircraft, including the PBY Catalina, JM1 (a modified B-26), and Grumman Avenger. Boyd met his soul mate, Louise, at the Steel Pier in Atlantic City near war’s end and married in 1945 beginning a joyous and fulfilling 62-year journey with his beloved “bebe.” He received a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from University of Washington and remained a rabid Husky fan and supporting alumnus throughout his life. Using his carpentry skills he hand-built their first home in Seattle. Boyd was a chemical engineer at the Hanford Nuclear Production Facility in Benton County Washington. One of his many achievements was the design of the device that allowed “fully contained” underground atomic testing to be successfully conducted. In 1957 he moved the family to Concord where he worked at University of California, Berkeley, before transferring to Lawrence Radiation Laboratory in Livermore. Boyd was a founding member of St. Bonaventure in Concord and later, St. Agnes, where he gave tirelessly of his time in constructing a number of buildings, including the church on the site. He was an active member of the Knights of Columbus achieving his 4th Degree. He served in a number of leadership positions. Boyd enjoyed bridge, working around the house, square dancing, crossword puzzles, and in later years, traveling around the world. He was a master mechanic and spent many hours working on the family’s automobiles. Boyd is survived by his wife of 62 years, Louise; son, Ronald Snyder; daughters, Therese Ford (Michael) & Rosemary Peters (Mark); grandchildren, Cynthia, Deborah, Thomas, Julia, Christine, Nathan, Martin, Alyson & Zachary; 11 great-grandchildren & 1 great-great-grandchild. He was predeceased by a son, Walter Paul Snyder in 1980. Visitation on Sunday, November 4, 2007 commencing at 1 p.m. with a Vigil Service at 4 p.m. at Ouimet Bros. Concord Funeral Chapel, 4125 Clayton Road, Concord. Funeral Liturgy will be Monday, November 5, 2007 at 10 a.m. at St. Agnes Church, 3966 Chestnut Ave., Concord. Interment at Queen of Heaven Cemetery, Lafayette. Memorials may be made to Knights of Columbus Charities, c/o Pat Deplazes, 4319 Pembroke Dr., Concord, CA 94521, or Bay Area Crisis Nursery, 1506 Mendocino Drive, Concord, CA 94521. Ouimet Bros. Chapel (925) 682-424
Published in the Contra Costa Times on 11/2/2007.


Entry filed under: aviation, Family, military.

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2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Kara  |  November 6, 2007 at 1:37 pm

    Very sorry to hear about Deb’s grandpa. I’m glad you can be there with her family.

  • 2. Mark N.  |  November 6, 2007 at 1:41 pm

    I’m very sorry to hear of his passing. He sounded like a really neat guy and lived a great life. I’m sure the family has many stories that they can share and remember him by.


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