MERLE "JACK" J. SNELL Fairfax Merle "Jack" J. Snell, 85, of Henderson, Nev., formerly of Fairfax and California, died peacefully in his home on May 9, 2019. A family celebration of life will be held later in his hometown. Jack was born Aug. 17, 1933, in Fairfax, Iowa, to Charles E. and Mary (Vanous) Snell. He graduated from Walford Consolidated School in 1950 and worked on the family farm until serving in the U.S. Army from 1953 to 1955. Jack furthered his education at the University of Iowa with a degree in mechanical engineering in 1961. Jack had a rich working history in mechanical engineering. Upon graduation at the University of Iowa, he moved to California to work for Honeywell. Years later, he transferred to the Burroughs Corp., which later became Memorex, and eventually closed in 1986. Jack did contract work for several companies until his retirement in 1996. Upon his retirement, Jack relocated to his "vacation" home in Henderson, Nev. He enjoyed many hobbies in his retirement. He was an accomplished photographer, taking pictures of nature wherever he went. He developed, enlarged and framed many of his pictures. He was an avid hockey fan and followed the Anaheim Ducks and was a Las Vegas Thunder season-ticket holder. He was excited when the NHL expansion team the Knights, came to Las Vegas. Throughout the years, when family and friends would visit, Jack would give personal tours of Las Vegas and the expansion projects. He also loved the companionship of dogs and became involved with the Humane Society, rescuing dogs that became his own. Klondike and Lady were his Great Pyrenees. Jackpot and Minnie were his Miniature Pinschers. Minnie was by his side through his illness and died shortly after him. Jack is survived by his sister, Mary Lou, and brother-in-law, David Selzer of Fairfax, along with many nieces and nephews. He is survived by longtime friends who were like family to him, the Steve Zummallen family of Henderson and the Don Kolehmainen family of Laguna Niguel, Calif. Jack was preceded in death by his parents; and 11 siblings, Florence Seiberling, Mabel Young, Edna Risdale, Evelyn Brecht, Charles F., Lester, Edward, Elmer, Raymond, Albert and Herbert. Memorials in Jack's name may be made to the Humane Society or donor's choice.
Published by The Gazette on May 29, 2019.