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Linda “Mimi” Snider departed this world on Thursday December 21, 2023, to join in eternal celebration of the next. Linda was welcomed to the party by her mother, Blanche Virginia Nelson, her father Garland F. Slaughter, her step-father S. Scott Nelson, her eldest brother Gary Slaughter and her niece, Sarah Diane.
It is of great comfort to know that Linda was greeted on the other side by those who gave her the most love and comfort here on earth. It was most certainly a joyful reunion of departed family and a peaceful transition into eternity. Linda is survived by her sister, Deborah Mason-Rooney, of Frederick MD, her sister-in-law Lorna Slaughter of Knoxville MD, her brother Steve Slaughter of Middletown, Maryland, and her youngest brother Larry Slaughter of Martinsburg, West Virginia.
Linda leaves behind her husband of 54 years, Irvin F. Snider Jr. The two met in 1968 on a blind date set up by a mutual friend, and on June 12, 1972 were married. Linda has 3 surviving children, Erica Snider of New Oxford, Jessica Storm of Hanover, and Adam Christopher Snider of New Oxford. Her children were the focus of her life as a stay at home mother during their early years. Like her mother before her, she taught her children to cook, bake, read and fostered their natural curiosities and interests. She imparted upon them her love for people, her flair for design, her love of art and her passion for individual artistic expression. She made mundane chores an experience in classical music, baking a lesson in science and could transform moments of boredom into an opportunity for storytelling and imaginative play.
Though Linda’s life was mainly dedicated to her husband and children, she had a wide array of hobbies and interests, which were not only creative outlets for her, but also a source of inspiration for countless others. From a young age Linda was a talented artist and cook. She grew up playing with her brothers and sister on a beautiful mountain farm nearby the Potomac River. She spent many summers meandering the Appalachian National Scenic Trail and the C&O Canal towpath, even crossing the railroad bridge to Harpers Ferry West Virginia. Linda was an independent and adventurous soul, fearless and determined. She graduated Boonesboro High School in 1966 and joined the National Organization for Women, determined to symbolically “burn bras” for women everywhere. Ironically her first adult job was as a junior designer for Hart Schaffner Marx, a men’s clothing company. Rumor has it that she also entered and won a local beauty pageant, but knowing Linda she probably did it just to “accidentally” hit a male judge with her baton during her majorette routine.
Shortly after marrying Irv, they moved to Knoxville, Tennessee and started a family. Five years later they moved to Chicago, Illinois and had two more children. There Linda studied architectural design at Prairie State University. In 1988, her Anglo-Japanese design won awards and her illustration boards toured the Midwest. These boards caught the eye of an architectural firm in Chicago, but the job was never formally offered, as the owner found out that she was a female with children. Linda in fact, did not burn enough bras to travel that career path.
In 1989 the family moved to New Oxford, PA where Linda put her design skills to the test while renovating the family’s early 1900’s home. Linda dedicated her next 20 years to alternative and special education programs for children and young adults in a Bible based setting. She became an ordained minister and dedicated herself to biblical study. Linda had a special place in her heart for children and believed that literacy was the key to success for every child, regardless of limitations. She was a reading and phonics specialist who, as her former students have quipped, “could teach a rock how to read”. Linda not only cared about her students’ scholastic success, she also cared deeply about her students’ spiritual wellbeing. Perhaps the most important aspect of her life was her walk in the faith. Linda led many children to the lord and ministered to thousands of “injured souls”. She believed that a relationship with Christ could heal the wounds of the world. As a prayer warrior, she felt that any mountain could be moved and any sea could be calmed by sincere conversation with God. Linda never sent anyone away without a full stomach, a full heart and a genuine belly laugh.
Though Linda had many passions and interests, nothing was more precious to her than her grandchildren. She first became a grandparent in 1998. Chloe Bryce, with those little pink pearls for toes, melted her heart in the way that only a grandchild can. Laurel Leigh came along in 2007 as a weak-in-the-knees adorable, fragile NICU baby but with a fighter spirit to match. In 2009, Mimi was blessed with two more granddaughters, only two months apart. They are cousins, but twin sisters at heart. Isla Grace, delicate but fierce, sweetly announces “I’m here!” when she enters a room, most closely resembles Linda as a child. Ivy Elise, bold and adventurous like her Mimi, but with a mischievous 2 year old grin would warn her Mimi: “I’ll cut you!”. Linda loved her girls more than anything in this world and enjoyed watching them be beautifully free spirited and driven, just like her.
Linda will be missed by so many. She touched the lives of countless people, young and old alike, and made many friends along the way. She had a gift for weaving humor into the darkness that sometimes befalls us in life. Linda’s best friends, Patricia M., Lori V., and Erica G. can all attest to her steel magnolia mantra “laughter through tears”.
“Maybe she’ll learn something about what death really is, which is where the pain stops and the good memories begin. Not the end of life, but the end of pain.” (Stephen King, Pet Sematary) Let us all realize that death is not an unfortunate or painful end to life, but a glorious new beginning where the tears give way to joy and laughter that never ends. We should remember Linda as a warrior who faced the pain and prayed and laughed in spite of it. As family and friends of Linda, when our time here is spent, we will enter the same joyful reception and she will be there to greet us.
A private celebration of life will be held for family and close friends at a later date. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Nitanny Greyhounds, Inc as a tribute to the granddogs Linda cherished: Scirroco, Meishka, Zero, Kuhmo, Bruder, Luna, Snape, and Quinn at https://nittanygreys.org/ or The National Organization for Women at https://now.org.