James Freeman Snider, 67, passed away Dec. 8, 2013, at the Bailey Family Center for Caring, in St. Augustine. Jim was born in Nashville, Tenn., and in his youth lived in Nevada City-Grass Valley, Calif., in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. He has also lived in Stillwater, Okla.; Gainesville; San Francisco; and finally St. Augustine. Jim was a combat helicopter pilot in Vietnam who received a Purple Heart, and an army instructor pilot in Texas. Later he was a commercial fisherman with his brother John, and a part-time Apache helicopter pilot for the Army National Guard in Jacksonville. For many years he was a water plant operator for the City of Palm Coast.
Jim received a BA from the University of Florida in English (creative writing) and also did some graduate work at UF. He was a devoted student of Buddhism who enjoyed the benefits of solitude-meditation, listening to jazz, and reading. He also loved being in nature-fishing, flying, and sailing. Jim was a good storyteller who loved to laugh and to make others laugh.
Jim was preceded in death by his sister Susan Amanda Snider and his parents Volla and Marion Snider. Jim is survived by his wife of 39 years, Pauline; his sister Hope White and her husband Tony, of Gainesville; his brother John Snider and his wife Terry, of Orlando; his sister Gena Snider and her partner Kyle Houghton, of St. Augustine; his brother Ralph Snider, of St. Augustine; and several nieces, nephews, and cousins.
The family expresses its deep gratitude to the Bailey Family Center for Caring, and to Jim's coworkers and the administrators for the City of Palm Coast. Jim would have been very grateful for any donations made to any of the following in his memory: The International Campaign for Tibet, 1825 Jefferson PL NW, Washington, DC 20036, www.saveTibet.org; the Sierra Jazz Society (a jazz camp), 15631 Lower Colfax Rd., Grass Valley, CA 95945, www.sierrajazzsociety.com; and the Bailey Family Center for Caring, 200 Health Park Blvd., St. Augustine, FL 32086.
Published in St. Augustine Record on Dec. 20, 2013