Betty Eileen (Byrd) Snook passed peacefully from this earth on April 4, 2018 with her family by her side. Betty was a wonderful woman who is loved; already missed; and will always be cherished. She was an amazing wife of nearly 72 years to Francis, and mother to 6 (Marianna Decker, Gene (Hank Castillo), Sherry Lombardi, Carmen (Todd) Pierce, Gayla (Cindy Pollard), and Jeff. Betty is also survived by 12 grandchildren; 15 great grandchildren; and two great, great grandchildren.
Betty’s story starts on April 27, 1927, the middle of three children of Fred and Mattie Byrd. Betty was born at her parent’s home in Fordland, MO. She graduated as valedictorian of her class in 1946, and attended Missouri State Teachers College in Springfield, MO. She taught one year at Slagle Country School.
Betty was a secretary at the Springfield YWCA when she met the love of her life, Francis W. Snook. After a whirlwind romance, the two were married in Marshfield, MO on October 22, 1946. Betty and Francis spent many hard-working years farming near Newton, IA. Betty was Francis’ sounding board, confidant, book-keeper, and his lifetime partner.
Betty and Francis were extensive travelers and went on many amazing vacations including England, Holland, Paris, Hawaii, and Alaska. Betty and Francis always had fun stories and great memories to share.
Betty used her talent with words to bring laughter and joy to her family, her many friends, and her community. She was a writer, a poet, and was often called upon to create poems or stories for special occasions. Betty loved to entertain and was well known for planning and creating her mystery dinners. As the family historian, she spent hours creating two books of family history and individual scrap books of photos for each of her children.
Betty was dedicated to the community, serving as a 4-H leader for 25 years including judging at the Jasper County Fair and serving on the County Fair Committee. She held many offices in the Sugar Grove Grange Ladies Club, Questers–Spirit of 76 Club, and taught adult Sunday school. She was also a leader of the Friendship Circle at Metz Community Church. Betty’s community service did not go unnoticed; in 1999, she was nominated for and inducted into the Iowa Master Home Makers.
Betty remained an avid collector of all kinds of antiques and glassware throughout her life and loved going to auctions. For a time, Betty had her own stall at Pappy’s Antiques in Newton, and was invited to speak about antique collecting, including a talk at the 1999 Iowa Farm Progress Show.
Betty was an amazing cook, seamstress; she loved to read, and was the family’s chief cook-and-bottle washer.
She leaves us rich in memories!
A celebration of life is planned for June. In lieu of flowers, please donate to the charity or church of your choice.