Stillwater News Press

March 8, 2014

Helen Jane Snider

Stillwater NewsPress

— Helen Jane Snider, 91, died Feb. 11 in Rancho Mirage, Calif. Helen was born Oct. 3, 1922, in Stillwater to Ralph Raymond and Tura Vesta (Childres) Boyd.  

Ralph built the home, with his Oklahoma A&M building trades students, at 807 S. Monroe where Helen, her sisters, Nell, Janet and Billie, and brother, Ralph Hollis, grew up. Helen had fond memories of childhood in a college town. Although times were hard for many, folks looked after each other. Helen remembered her mom always found something from her garden for the itinerants who came to the back gate.  

After graduating from Hill’s Business College in Oklahoma City, Helen worked for Phillips Petroleum in Bartlesville and Borger, Texas. In 1945, she joined the U.S. Department of State Foreign Service. Helen was assigned to the U.S. Embassy in Madrid as chief cryptographer, and later as vice-consul.  There she met her husband, Clyde William Snider, a foreign service officer and WWII combat veteran. They married in 1947 in Tunis, Spanish Morocco.  

Clyde’s career took them to diplomatic posts all over the world, including the Netherlands, Indonesia, Romania, Washington, D.C., the Dominican Republic, Mexico, Okinawa and Honduras. Helen returned to Stillwater many times, including for her parents’ 50th anniversary in 1966 and later, a Stillwater High reunion. She kept her roots in the firm Oklahoma soil.

In 1975, Helen and Clyde retired to the southern California desert.

Helen volunteered for local civic and children’s organizations as she had while living abroad, and played lots of bridge and golf.

Helen was preceded in death by her husband Clyde, in 1994, and her siblings. She is survived by her children Clyde Jr., San Rafael, Calif., Raymond, Reykjavik, Iceland, Martin, El Cerrito, Calif., Margaret, Rancho Mirage, Calif., and six grandsons.