Phyllis Hinton Snyder

February 15, 1923 - May 9, 2017
Phyllis Hinton Snyder


Phyllis Hinton Snyder was released from the horrid grips of dementia and joined her loved ones gone before her at 7:00 AM, Tuesday May 9, 2017. No more misery, no more loss of dignity…your happy and free, but will be missed forever.

A celebration of her life will take place on Friday, May 12, 2017 at 2:00 PM at the First Christian Church, 2035 Oleander Drive. The family will receive friends following the celebration of her life. She will be buried at Arlington National Cemetery beside her husband who preceded her in death Master Gunnery Sergeant James William Snyder on March 20, 1964.

Born February 15, 1923, in North Canton, Ohio to the late Russell William and Leona Stump Hinton.

She is survived by her older sister Pearl Reikowsky of Minerva, Ohio; her daughters Sandra Drew of Herndon, VA and Cheryl Snyder-Neff of Wilmington, NC; her grandchildren Samantha Fil (Eric), Phillip Drew (Kaylie); three Great granddaughters; many nieces and nephews and her loyal companions’ the whippets Kip and Margo.

She started life on a farm. She enlisted in the USMC during WWII becoming an aircraft mechanic and was one of the first USMC women to be honorably discharged when the war ended. She married a marine, was even Queen for a day. In 2004, she wrote “But I am here to tell you I had a great life. I experienced history. I made history. I didn’t read it the newspaper or watch it on TV. I do know that I was happiest and proudest to be doing the job I did as a Marine.”

Donations to dementia organizations and animal rescue are appreciated. But greatly needed is the awareness of how isolating this disease is for the patient and the caregiver, for years. Our wish is for all to reach out and give assistance to an, at home, caregiver that is doing their best to survive this retched disease and keep their loved one content and comfortable. We all hit a time when we’ve lost hope and need someone to put their arms around us and say: “I’ve got you right now. I won’t let you face this alone” A conversation, sitting with the patient, bringing food, any gesture of empathy. And finding a cure. That is our wish in Phyllis’ memory.

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Wilmington Funeral & Cremation 1535 S. 41st Street Wilmington, NC 28403. 910.791.9099


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  • May 11, 2017
    Nancy Wilt says:
    I did not know Phyllis but for her to serve as an aircraft mechanic during WWII shows she was an extremely bright individual that could be trusted to do her job in a superb manner. Pilots and crews depended on her ability to locate and repair problems that could have not only cost a successful mission but also cost the crew their lives. As Historian for the Women Marine Association and Curator of the Women of the Corps Collection I have saved the stories of hundreds of women from the WWII era and I will add Phyllis to their ranks. To have been not only a Marine but the wife of a successful Marine husband makes her a very special individual and one that we will remember. Semper Fidelis,

  • May 12, 2017
    Michele Sessoms says:
    I was Phyllis's caretaker for about a year around 2010. We went to Walmart together. She would push the buggy. I was always afraid she would push the buggy into someone but she never did. Lol Also we would go to my house just for a change of environment sometimes. I think Phyllis enjoyed that. And she would come with me to run errands. She liked riding in the car. And she loved her dogs. I enjoyed knowing Phyllis . RIP my friend.

  • May 13, 2017
    Bobbi Bannerman says:
    Cheryl, my thoughts are with you during this difficult time. I send warm wishes for peace and love to live in your heart.

  • May 14, 2017
    Pam Pless says:
    Cheryl, I am very sorry for the loss of your mother. I didn't know Phyllis for very long. However, I do remember her telling me about her military service as a Marine in WWII who worked on airplanes! How fascinating it was to hear her talk about it! She was a lovely person. My heartfelt wishes for comfort in the days ahead as you remember your Mom.

  • May 14, 2017
    Samantha says:
    “My Grandma’s a Marine” is how most conversation regarding Grandma would start. She taught me how to shine my boots before I went to basic training and wore her service dress to render me my fist salute when I commissioned into the Air Force four years later. She was practical and particular and lived life to the fullest. As a child, I remember her cutting my bangs as I sat on the kitchen stool in the middle of her living room. With arthritic hands, she could still through a mean knuckle ball while playing catch in the back yard and bowl a perfect game while critiquing my less than perfect technique. She loved a good card game and we spent many a summer evening playing London rummy. She frequently shared stories of growing up in Ohio, trying to keep up with her brothers, and of her early days in the Marines. She loved to dance and played in the bell choir at her church. I was fortunate enough to be stationed in North Carolina for four years, after the dementia started to progress, but have many fond memories of dining out at favorite restaurants where a tasty dish was still appreciated with an “Mmm, mmm, mmm.” Of a night out in dancing in Myrtle Beach, where my beer (Blue Moon with an orange) was gulped down by a thirsty Grandma, who then wanted another. Of finding a squishy, spiky ball that we could still play catch with while sitting in the living room. Our last holiday together, when after waiting for her great-granddaughter to get her first Christmas photos taken, Santa left his post to get a picture with Grandma. That’s the type of charisma she had. And of course, none of these later memories would be possible if my Aunt had not become her full-time care-giver, sacrificing much of herself, to ensure that Grandma was always cared for and surrounded with love. A true example of Semper Fidelis. Here’s a toast…