Sagamore remembers lifelong resident and trustee Rose Mary Snell

by Laura Bednar

Rose Mary Snell, a lifelong Sagamore Hills resident and trustee for 20 years, passed away on July 24 at the age of 84.

Snell, Sagamore’s first female trustee, was elected to the board of township trustees in 1994. Trustee Paul Schweikert said two years prior, the township had a somewhat negative relationship with the state of Ohio after pulling a petition to prevent the construction of housing for convicted juvenile felons within Sagamore.

He said that Snell helped improve that relationship in 1996 when she asked the Ohio Department of Mental Health to sell land that is now Sagamore Hills Township Park. The township purchased almost 40 acres for $180,000.

In 1997, Snell worked with the International Union of Operating Engineers, Local 18, to install the park’s first baseball field, known as “Veteran’s Field.” Her commitment to the park continued in 1998 when she convinced Pulte Homes to donate a gazebo to the area.

One of the larger projects in which she was involved was the preservation of over 450 acres of greenspace on Valley View Road, across from the end of Chaffee Road. She led the effort to purchase 191 acres from the Ohio Department of Mental Health through the Trust for Public Land in partnership with Cuyahoga Valley National Park and the Cleveland Metroparks, which purchased the remaining acreage, according to the township website.

In her time as a trustee, she was instrumental in getting the township $5 million in grants, according to Schweikert. Her obituary stated, “Her meticulous organization and follow-up emerged from many years of working in real estate, handling the details of closings.”

She received a Lifetime Achievement Medal in 2007 from the Cuyahoga Valley Regional Council of Governments for her outstanding public service. Her obituary also said she was “an officer of the Township Association of Summit County, [serving] on many county committees.”

“Anything she was asked to do, she always hit it out of the park,” said Schweikert.

She was the wife of husband, Dudley E. (63 years), mother of Jeffrey (Dr. Jennifer A. Kale), grandmother to Logan S. Snell, sister to five siblings and aunt to many.

Her memory lives on with township residents with a pavilion and trail in Sagamore Hills Park named in her honor. ∞

Photo: Rose Mary Snell was instrumental in obtaining land for present-day Sagamore Hills Park. Photo submitted