Edward G. Sneed, 87, of St. Peters, Missouri, passed away at his home, peacefully in his sleep on July 27, 2023, after a years-long battle with dementia. In his last days, he was surrounded and loved by his wife, three children and five grandchildren.
Ed was born in Lake City, Arkansas on December 5, 1935, to Oscar and Zelma (McCrackin) Sneed. He was the sixth of nine children. He was raised on his parents' Depression-era sharecropping farm and was taught an ethic of hard work, which was a defining characteristic for Ed throughout his life. He enjoyed playing baseball and tinkering with cars. He graduated from Oak Grove High School in 1954.
After graduation, Ed spent some time living with his older brothers in Flint, Michigan, and took a job working for Chevrolet. He moved to St. Louis, Missouri in 1956 and began his life-long career of 40 years with McDonnell-Douglas. His career was briefly paused when he was drafted into the US Army, serving for two years in Germany, where he excelled as a truck driver. He loved to tell stories of taking his deuce and a half over the narrow, mountain roads.
Returning to McDonnell-Douglas, he worked as a tube and cable mechanic, crafting the fuselages of all their famous planes: the Banshee, Phantom, Harrier, Eagle, and Hornet. He later became supervisor of this department, and he was well-respected by his staff for his knowledge and skill. To make ends meet in the early years, he also worked part-time at a service station where he also drove a truck again, this time to help stranded motorists.
Ed met his wife, Gloria, who was also raised on a farm in Arkansas, in St. Louis in 1961, at church. He may have moved quickly to sit next to her in a pew when he saw her the first time. They were married in January of 1963. As a family, they spent their vacations traveling to national and state parks with their kids, camping and fishing and riding dirt bikes. He was a true Cardinals fan and took his family to the ballpark every season and he often sported a red StL ball cap.
After a short retirement, Ed began working for Patriot Machine in St. Charles, where he designed and built specially made shipping boxes and crates. In this role he was also dispatched as a part-time caretaker for Our Lady of the Rivers site in Portage De Sioux. He retired from this 16-year second career at the age of 80.
He was an active member of both Calvary Baptist Church in Jennings, Missouri, and Carrollton Baptist Church in Bridgeton, Missouri, where he served as softball coach, usher, Sunday School teacher for high school boys and as a youth group bus driver and mechanic.
Ed is survived by his beloved wife of 60 years, Gloria Sneed (Ray), his children Vickie (Simon) Pursifull; Brian; and Doug; and his grandchildren Chad, Blake and Taylor (Bond), and Jordan; and Killian and Bradyi; and his youngest brother Larry and sister-in-law Diane. He was preceded in death by his parents and his brothers and sisters Cecil, Helen, Jean, Jackie, Roy, Patsy and Bobby.
Edward will be laid to rest at Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery where he can watch the Mississippi flow down to Arkansas and towards his old family farm. Ed had a lifelong love of his dogs, who were never without a treat from his hand. Those wishing to honor Edward’s memory are asked to contribute donations to the Humane Society of Missouri.