A Century of Care
The Snyder family has been honored to serve Ohio families for 100 years. Since the funeral home founding in 1922, five generations of Snyders have gone above and beyond to comfort the living while creating meaningful tributes to honor and celebrate each unique life lived. Watch the documentary produced by New Day Creative for the full story. ♡
From humble beginnings as the horsekeeper for the local funeral director, Ora O. Snyder took an interest in deathcare. Orrie (as friends called him) would later say that it was too cold outside to wait with the horses, so he started going inside the family home with the undertaker — we can thank the cold Ohio winters for helping create Snyder Funeral Homes! Orrie decided to attend the Columbus Embalming School.
Ora Otis Snyder driving with his dad Henry Albert Snyder in the passenger seat, his sister Hazel Snyder laughing in the back seat.
In 1922, Ora purchased his first funeral home in Johnsville, which he operated with his wife Marion (Lucas) Snyder. They bought a second location (formerly Manier Seminary) in Lexington, remodeling it into a funeral home in 1926. A special button was installed to dispatch the Troy Township Fire Department since the funeral home had the only telephone answered 24-hours a day in the village.
Ora & Marion had thirteen children (10 boys and 3 girls) who all lived in and helped out around the funeral home. Four of the boys later became funeral directors.
The young Snyder family: Ora & Marion and their eldest children Don, Betty, Dick, Dave, Bob, and baby Pete
In 1941, Ora purchased the A.A. Shafer Funeral Home in Bellville. During WWII, several of the Snyder children served their country overseas. One heartwarming family story tells about funeral director Dick Snyder who was able to arrange a Paris war-time meeting with his brother David in December 1944.
Short on extra hands, Marion Snyder obtained her funeral directors license and assisted Ora in operating the three funeral homes. She was one of the first women in the state of Ohio to hold a funeral director's license! In 1946, the Snyder family bought the Ira S. George Funeral Home in Butler. Ora and Marion’s sons, Dick and Bob, completed their mortuary school training and joined their parents in the family business.
funeral directors Dick Snyder and Henry Hosler stand between cars 1937 Ford, 1940 LaSalle, 1946 Chrysler, and 1948 Buick outside of the Bellville Snyder Funeral Home
In 1953, the Snyders purchased the Howard Meredith Funeral Home in Fredericktown. Known as the S. S. Tuttle House dating back to the 1840s, the building was purchased from Kelly and Marie Walter and is currently listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Ora and Marion’s son Phil completes his mortuary schooling and is licensed.
Ora and Marion Snyder, Christmas Eve 1956 in the living quarters above the Bellville funeral home
In April of 1963, the Snyder family opened a funeral home in Mount Gilead in the building that was the former (and notably controversial) Nathan Tucker Laboratory.
Ora and Marion Snyder, surrounded by their 13 children on the occasion of their 50th wedding anniversary in 1966 seated: Betty, Marion, Ora, Pat standing: Dick, Jim, Phil, Pete, Paul, Janet, Dave, Don, Bob, Arden, Art
Dennis Snyder (Dick’s son) is licensed on April 13, 1971. That same year, identical funeral homes are constructed; one on OH-97 to serve Bellville & Butler, the other on Lexington Avenue to serve Lexington & Mansfield.
Ora personally performs the groundbreaking of the new Bellville Snyder Funeral Home. His sons and grandsons look on (L to R) Phil, Trent, Dennis, Dick, and Paul Snyder.
The Snyder Family extends their service to the city of Marion in 1974 by leasing the former Hughes-Hyle Funeral Home (this location is closed in 1985). J. Paul Snyder (Ora’s son) is licensed on January 1, 1975. Trent Snyder (Ora’s grandson, Philip’s son) is licensed on April 26, 1976. Dan Snyder (Dick’s son) is licensed on September 30, 1977.
Flowers Funeral Home in Mount Vernon joins the Snyder Family in 1981. C. Clay Snyder (Phil’s son) and J. Todd Snyder (Paul’s son) are licensed on April 10, 1985. That same year, the Craven Funeral Home in Mount Gilead becomes Craven & Snyder Funeral Home upon the retirement of Max Craven on October 1. Dowds-Wiggins Funeral Home is added in 1989 so the Snyder Family can better serve the Mount Vernon community.
In 1993, three locations of DeVore Funeral Homes are added as the Snyder Family extends to Delaware County. In 1996, the Snyder family constructs a new crematory in Mount Vernon so they can contol the whole process start-to-finish for their cremation clients. That same year, Weston “Wes” Snyder (Dennis’ son) is licensed on November 18.
In 2003, Chad Snyder (Trent’s son) is licensed on November 18. Gene Farison and Jack Hottinger of the Denzer-Farison-Hottinger Funeral Home partners with Snyder Funeral Homes in 2006, now the Denzer Chapel in Marion. The historic location of Finefrock Funeral Home is acquired in Mansfield on December 15, 2007. Sean Snyder (Ora’s great-grandson) is licensed on September 17, 2008.
In 2012, Rodman Neeper Funeral Home in Delaware, Bennett Brown Funeral Home in Ashley and Rodman Funeral Service in Columbus is welcomed to the team. Hannah Snyder (Todd’s daughter) is licensed on November 18, 2013. The Richardson-Davis Funeral Home in Galion becomes a part of the Snyder Funeral Home family, now the Snyder Funeral Home Richardson Davis Chapel, on November 25, 2013. On November 19, 2014, Gunder/Hall & Folk Funeral Directors in Marion becomes a part of the Snyder Funeral Home family, now the Gunder Hall Chapel. Gideon Snyder (Todd’s son) is licensed on April 26, 2016.
In 2022, the Snyder family celebrate 100 years since Ora & Marion founded the funeral home.
The Snyder family recreates the photo taken in 1966, sitting in the same room on the same chairs in the former Snyder Funeral Homes on Main Street in Bellville. Behind: Braxton, Wes, Sean, Gideon, J. Todd, C. Clay, Ridge, and Chad. Front: Dennis, Hannah, J. Paul, and Trent.