Rod Snider spent his last few weeks enjoying one of his favorite spots - his porch overlooking Lake Wylie.
"He kept saying, 'This is what it's all about,'" said his son, John Snider. "It was a nurturing view. He was an amateur philosopher of life and that was his favorite place, if it wasn't the tennis court or a table full of good food and friends."
Snider, 83, died Tuesday April 23, at his home in Tega Cay. Snider was an active member of the Fort Mill Rotary Club and served the community as a member of Unity Presbyterian Church and a volunteer for the United Way of York County and Good Folks of York County.
Friend and fellow Rotarian Howard Jones remembers meeting Snider and his wife, Peg, on their first house-hunting trip to Tega Cay. They moved to the city nearly 20 years ago from Elkhart, Ind. Jones said that shortly after their move, he brought Snider into the Fort Mill Rotary Club.
Snider had been a member of Rotary International since 1960, and he transferred his membership to the local group.
"He was immediately active, very knowledgeable and committed to the principals that I think bring most people to Rotary," said Rotarian Anne Suite. "If I had to sum up what he was and what he meant to people is that he was the embodiment of the Rotary Code of Ethics in the four way test."
The Rotary Club's four-way test asks questions about truthfulness and building goodwill, and was something Snider "adored," said John Snider. And while Rotary was one of his favorite groups to be part of, John Snider said of his father, all of the organizations Snider volunteered for had a special place in his heart.
When Snider moved to the area in 1989, he and his son, Mark, began Snider, Inc., a Charlotte-based manufacturer's representative firm.Working together made their relationship special, Mark Snider said, and gave them a chance to get to know each other as peers, not just as a father and son.
Mark Snider remembers his father as an active participant in every community he lived in, despite moving around frequently before settling in Tega Cay.
"He was active everywhere we lived, the whole time we were growing up," Mark Snider said. "He felt it was very important to give back to the community. It was normal for him. Both of them, every time they were in an association and would be at one of those meetings someone would ask for volunteers. My parents are the kind of people that raise their hands."
Suite said Snider "raised his hand" for the Rotary Club on numerous occasions, but remembers in particular the stellar work he did as the group's secretary in his early years of involvement.
Secretary of the Rotary Club is one of the most difficult positions, she added, but Snider was "phenomenal and got the position into shape."
Snider was also a member of the Tega Cay Vintage Club and an active part of the Tega Cay Tennis Association. He was a U.S. Navy Veteran who served in World War II.
He is survived by his wife of 55 years, Peg; his sons, John Snider and his wife, Polly, of St. Paul, Minn., and Mark Snider and his wife, Kim, of Charlotte; his daughter, Susan Snider, and Carmelita Karhoff of Durham, N.C.; and two granddaughters, Jessica and Julia Snider.
"He was very brave. It was so beautiful," John Snider said. "He didn't waver in all of his dying. He was gracious and kind up to his last breath. It wasn't just window dressing - it was his life."