By Rebecca Goodman
The Cincinnati Enquirer
INDIAN HILL - Laddie F. Snyder, founder of Fame Tool & Manufacturing in Madisonville, died of an aneurysm Jan. 18 at St. Elizabeth Hospital.
He and his wife, Helen, were at Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport on their way to their home in North Palm Beach, Fla., when Mr. Snyder collapsed. The Indian Hill resident was 85.
"He was a wonderful, generous, compassionate person," his wife said. It didn't matter who it was, "he would talk and console them and help them."
His sister-in-law, Cay Benadum of Kenwood, added, "His employees respected Laddie for his perception and knowledge, and appreciated his patience and motivation."
Mr. Snyder had an "unquenchable enthusiasm and love of life, as well as abiding affection for his fellow men that endeared him to people from all walks of life," Ms. Benadum said.
He began his entrepreneurial career when he was 8, delivering the Cleveland Plain Dealer to the city's east-side suburbs on his bicycle.
A customer encouraged him to become a mechanical engineer and he studied that subject at Case Western Reserve University.
Upon graduation he became one of the youngest managers at the Hudson plant in Detroit, where he helped design the Hudson Hornet engine.
Mr. Snyder came to Cincinnati when he was hired by Powel Crosley to manage the team that produced the Crosley motorcar.
For many years, Mr. Snyder was a member of the board of the National Tool, Die and Precision Machining Association. He served as the association's president and developed a tool-and-die makers' apprenticeship program.
In addition to Fame Tool & Manufacturing, Mr. Snyder owned Electric Service Co. across Hetzell Street. While he and his wife spent the winter months in Florida, retirement was unthinkable, according to Mrs. Snyder.
Mr. Snyder was an avid sports fan who held season tickets for the Reds and the Bengals. He played golf at Kenwood Country Club, where he was president in 1963. The club dedicated the 18th hole of Kenview to Mr. Snyder as a Legend of the Club.
Mr. Snyder had no children, but lavished attention on his nieces and nephews. "He was the quintessential uncle who always had time to listen, to counsel, to motivate and indulge," said his sister-in-law.
In addition to Helen, his wife of 62 years, survivors include a sister, Emma Strancar of Cleveland.
Services have been held. Burial was at Gate of Heaven Cemetery, Montgomery.
Memorials: Over-the-Rhine Soup Kitchen-Cafe, 37 Back St., Cincinnati 45210; or Parish Kitchen, P.O. Box 1234, Covington, Ky. 41012-1234.
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