Ronald John Snow
Ronald John Snow, age 78, passed away on June 5, 2020, following a long illness. Shortly before he died, he was happy to see his close family members at his home in Tannersville, New York.
Ron was born on June 26, 1941 in New Brunswick, New Jersey. His parents were Wilfred Henry Snow and Jane (Janina) Rudecki. Growing up in Piscataway, N.J., Ron and his younger brother Billy learned the electrical trade from their father, an independent contractor. Wilfred’s truck proudly displayed the logo “FUSE BLOW, CALL SNOW.” After high school, Ron worked as a ground hand (a “grunt”) for a highway lighting contractor and soon decided to join the IBEW (International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers) as an apprentice. Initially a lineman, he dug holes and climbed poles. He fondly remembered his first foreman, Slim Winchester, who taught him discipline (made him roll down his sleeves) and safe practices (wear the helmet and long rubber gloves) when up the towers. With good humor, Ron reminisced about his last day at that job: Slim said, “Get your tools, Ron, you just quit!”
In 1959 Ron married his sweetheart, Joyce Nelson. He gave up the risky lineman’s work and eventually qualified as Journeyman Wireman for Local 358 in Perth Amboy, N.J. (now 456 in North Brunswick). Sadly, Joyce passed away very young, leaving Ron and their daughter, Susan, who was only five.
Years later, Ron occasionally worked out of Local 3 in New York City. In the summer of 1977 at a public swimming pool he met Sharon Hart, a French teacher in Manhattan. Besides swimming, they found much in common, notably the wish to go see St. Pierre and Miquelon, the French islands off Nova Scotia. Within days, the great East Coast Black-Out occurred. Although the 77th St. pool was open, it was warm, un-filtered and over-crowded, so they packed his Buick with camping gear and left for Halifax and St. Pierre. The adventure led to marriage, a part-time home in the Catskills and a son named Henry. It was a life of commuting, camping, cooking and fixing up the home in Tannersville. It was a good life, supported by love, family and friends.
For over 40 years as a union electrician, Ron showed up to pull wire and bend pipe at sites throughout northern New Jersey. The work was essential. With his IBEW brothers, Ron installed and maintained power for utilities, steel mills, oil and gas refineries, storage tank “farms”, chemical and manufacturing plants, sewage facilities, hospitals, restaurants, and other commercial businesses. Often a foreman, always a worker, Ron loved the variety of tasks and the mix of men and women he worked with. He also enjoyed the “travelers” who came to the Northeast when the economy faltered elsewhere in the US or Canada. Conversely, he was well-received when he went out to Indiana to work (and camp) in the 1990s. Ron considered all members of the Brotherhood his brothers. He was known for his humor and his humanity.
On September 11, 2001, Ronny was working on the roof of the nearly completed Goldman Sachs building in Jersey City. He witnessed both planes strike the Towers of the World Trade Center and alter our world irreparably. That event figured big in his dreams for many years. It confirmed his intention always to live in the now. He firmly believed “You only go through the garden once.” Ronny retired in 2002, taking his work tools home to Tannersville where, for his last years, he enjoyed fixing things electrical for his neighbors and friends.
Ron Snow is survived by his wife, Sharon Hart Snow, who lives in Tannersville and New York City; his son, Henry Hart Snow, of Queens, NY; his brother Billy Allan Snow, of Equinunk, PA; his daughter, Susan K. Plank of Allentown, PA; their spouses, as well as three grand-children and two nephews.
In memory of Ronald J. Snow, donations may be sent to New York Oncology / Hematology in Albany, NY and to the Community Hospice in Catskill. His family is hugely appreciative of the kindness and professionalism of the employees of these institutions.No funeral service, according to his wishes.