William C. Snyder

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William Charles Snyder was born on August 17, 1987, in Gaylord, MI. He passed away while skiing Hatcher Pass in Alaska on April 21, 2023. He was 35 years old.

Will lived life to the fullest. He was an avid skier, hockey player, golfer, and best friend to everyone. He traveled the world to hike, ski, and seek adventure.

Will grew up in Gaylord, Michigan where he developed his love of the outdoors. He learned to ski at Otsego Club and Resort and eventually held his first ski school position on those very slopes. He played hockey through OCHA and then on the Gaylord Blue Devils High School team with his brother. In the summers, he worked as bag staff at the golf course and spent time in South Carolina golfing with his dad. His work ethic was strong from an early age and a credit to his time spent in Sparr, MI. Throughout his childhood, he played hockey and other sports. In 2006, Will graduated from Gaylord High School and set off to Michigan State University.

After graduating from MSU, Will spent time in South Carolina where he earned his boat captain license and served as a tour guide at Tidal Wave Water Sports. In 2014, he moved to Aspen, CO, and joined the Aspen Snowmass Ski School beginning with the Under 6 program and recently working on the private lessons team. He was a Certified Level III ski instructor and had recently completed his Professional Ski Instructors of America Rocky Mountain Trainer certification. Never idle, Will worked at Mi Chola greeting and networking with locals and tourists. Will was a prominent member of the Aspen hockey community and one could always find him on the hockey rink in pink with his team the Skullbeards or refereeing/coaching an Aspen Junior Hockey game.

Will loved everyone, but especially his family. An irreplaceable role model for his nephews and cousins, he cheered them on in their sporting events and encouraged their love of skiing and hockey.

William is survived by his mother, Carol Nelson-Snyder; siblings, Shannon Snyder, Patrick (Laura) Nelson, and Jennifer (Darren) Littell; step-mom, Lisa Snyder; step-sisters, Michelle McKenzie and Danielle McClure; grandmother, Patricia Nelson; aunts and uncles, Susan Nelson, David Nelson, Kelly (Kenny) Steinthal, Elizabeth (Philip) Tobias, and Ann Ostrowski; nieces, nephews, and cousins, Dillon Snyder, Watson Littell, Hogan Tobias, Jack Tobias, Thaddeus Ostrowski, Rob Ostrowski, and many other extended family and friends.

He is preceded in death by his father, Charles Snyder; grandparents, H. Charles Nelson, William Snyder, and Fern Snyder.

A memorial service will take place in Aspen, CO, on Thursday, April 27, 2023. It will begin with a Remembrance Service at Home Team at The Inn at Aspen from 4:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. with a Celebration of Life at Mi Chola beginning at 6: 00 p.m.

A Mass of Christian burial will be held on Saturday, May 6, 2023, at St. Mary Cathedral in Gaylord, Michigan at 10:00 a.m. with visitation beginning at 9:00 a.m.

Visitation will also be held at the Nelson Funeral Home on Friday, May 5, 2023, from 5:00-8:00 p.m.

In Lieu of Flowers, the family requests donations be made to support William’s nephew, Dillon Snyder’s future enrichment and education, or to support Aspen Junior Hockey, by visiting the bolded links provided.

Arrangements have been entrusted to the Nelson Funeral Home and Cremation Service, P.O. Box 1548 Gaylord, MI 49734.

32 comments on “William C. Snyder”

  1. Elizabeth and the Nelson Family,
    There are no words to write to express how sorry I am you are going through such a tragic loss. Take care of yourself, and each other.
    All my love, Kristin Fitzek

  2. Craig and Berni Seidell

    So sorry for your loss. Sending prayers to all the family. May he rest in peace. 🙏🏼
    Craig and Berni Seidell

  3. I’m so very sorry for your loss, too young too soon. May he rest in peace and be welcomed home by our Lord. I am sure Chuck was there at the gate to greet him. Prays and thoughts Kelly, Elizabeth, and family. Such a hard loss.

  4. Annette Lane Pfankuch

    To Carol and the Nelson family my very sincere sympathy. You William certainly was much too young to leave this world,. Hugs and Prayers to you all at this sad time. Annette (Lane) Pfankuch

  5. Don and Linda Fitzek

    So very, very sorry for your loss Carol, my friend. I remember when he was born. Special prayers and hugs going out to you and your mom….and your entire family.

  6. This is so sad to hear. I worked at Kiawah and played hockey with Will here in Charleston. He was a great guy. The hockey community in Charleston will be thinking about him!! My condolences to the family!

    1. I had a lot of good childhood memories with Will through junior high. We used to ski, ride dirtbikes, run track, and golf together. I will remember him for these good times together growing up. He had a good heart, was a positive role model, and respected others. Happy to see he continued to do what he loved. Condolences to the family. Rest In peace Brother.

  7. Condolences to All, Will was a wonderful person, really enjoyed playing golf with him, wish I could have taken some runs! Peace be with you in these difficult times!

  8. Will was a wonderful young man. He was so warm and loving. We would reminisce about his experiences in Sparr and laugh about his escapades as a kid. He was so thoughtful calling on holidays to just say hi. I was always so proud of him for doing what he loved to do. He always had a smile and a warm hug. He will be missed dearly. Prayers for your family and all of his friends. ❤️Boogie

  9. Carol, and the entire Nelson family~ I am so sorry for your loss. May Will rest in peace. You are all in my prayers during this most difficult time.

    Tonya Fitzek Weber

  10. Hugs and prayers to all of Will’s fam 🙏❤️
    I knew him thru skiing, and golf, and restaurants, and property mngt etc here since he moved and came to love this town/resort so much. He has known my daughter since she was 5, and we shared many a laugh together. We will (so many ppl) miss him so much. Love and prayers to you all

  11. Elaine Hegenauer (Downham )

    So sorry for your loss. Prayers are going out to the whole family and may there be peace knowing that he is reunited with Grandpa.

  12. I will always remember WIll, on a bus, or during a hockey game. He is a young man to remember. I am so sorry for the family and our loss. I wish your family peace.

  13. William, sweet William, worked with us on a ranch we managed for years in Snowmass, Colorado.
    He was Guy’s right-hand man and my little brother in many ways. We are sad with heavy hearts. We send the most profound love to his parents and family, especially his nephews. He spoke so dearly of his family. He enjoyed so many things the valley offered him and his adventurous spirit lives on in our hearts. We think of him often, but today in grief as we just learned of this. All our love to you all! – Karen and Guy

  14. Will, you are the best friend ever to anyone you meet, and I am sure your wonderful grandfather is happy to greet you with eternity with him and we will meet again someday!! We sure enjoyed the time together and rest in peace. Prayers and comfort for all the family members who are still here and someday will meet you again for eternity! You gave us great memories and you lived your life to the fullest!!
    Thanks, WILL,,,,
    Gene Skiba and family 🙏

  15. Dear Nelson Families,
    Sorry for the loss of this young life.
    Our Prayer to All…
    Hugs & Love Bud & Pat Robarge.

  16. Hon. Norman R Hayes

    Carol, Pat and Family;
    I am so sorry for your loss. May the comfort of God’s love help you through this difficult time.

  17. I was never very close with Will but we crossed paths in East Lansing what seemed like every other weekend.

    He is one of those people you meet where right away you can tell that they are kind, genuine, and caring. It was never hard to start and hold a conversation with him.

    Big W, if you can hear me, thank you…and keep chasing the powder snow wherever you are.

  18. So very heartbroken for all of you at this horrible time of tragic loss. He was so full of life and always smiling and so polite whenever I saw him….starting back in our hockey days, hockey dinners, etc 🥰. My prayers go out to all his family and friends, may you somehow find peace and treasure all those great memories, as I know you will 🙏

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