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Silver Taps Notification

Earl Snavely Jr. '48 June 4, 2020 2:12 PM updated: June 4, 2020 2:15 PM

Dr. Earl Samuel Snavely Jr.
APRIL 10, 1927 – MAY 20, 2020

Earl S. Snavely, Jr. died peacefully in Dallas on May 20 after a short illness. Earl was 93.

He was born at Ft. Clark, Brackettville, TX to Earl Snavely, Sr. and his wife Emma (Schafer) Snavely. It was an Army family and they moved frequently. Earl and his two sisters Frances and Betty spent their youth at assignments in the Philippines, El Paso, Kansas and San Antonio. The children lost their mother at a young age and between the frequent upheaval of moving, the Great Depression and the specter of World War II, it was a challenging upbringing.

Earl was an Aggie, Class of ‘48, graduating with a chemistry degree and a commission as First Lieutenant in the Corps of Cadets. As the war was over, he was not called to active service. Earl worked in Texas and Louisiana and returned to school at The University of Texas where he earned a master’s degree in physical chemistry in 1950.

While in Austin he married Anne Johnston, with whom he shared a 43-year marriage that endured through most of his professional career. Anne bore their only child, David Earl, and the family spent happy years in Austin and Arlington, Texas, before Anne’s death in 1995.

During his time at UT, Earl’s career path was shaped by the mentorship of the eminent scientist, Dr. Norman Hackerman. Earl credited Dr. Hackerman with encouraging him to earn his Ph.D. degree at UT and inspiring the confidence to complete his studies and devote his career to chemical research with Tracor, Inc. of Austin, and Mobil Research and Development Corporation at the Field Research Laboratory in Dallas.

Earl enjoyed a prosperous career as an engineering consultant with Mobil, where he specialized in corrosion engineering and chemical process problem solving, being credited wholly or as a collaborator with 27 U.S. patents. He was author of numerous technical papers, chapters and publications referred to by professionals in the energy industry. He was active as a member and editor in the Electrochemical Society and the National Association of Corrosion Engineers. Despite his considerable technical achievements, however, Earl enjoyed spending time with his family, his neighbors in his adoptive hometown of Arlington, and an ever-increasing list of friends from all over.

In his later years Earl especially enjoyed working on his small farm at Lytle, Texas, frequently assisted by his longtime friend and associate from Mobil, Dick Morris. After retirement from Mobil, Earl was active as a consultant and expert witness, which took him to several international locations.

Earl and a fellow Mobil retiree, Peggy Trigg, were married in 1999 and remained active in the Dallas area, where they were residents of Highland Springs Senior Living Community.

Highlights of Earl’s last years were his 90th birthday celebration in Dallas, attended by those closest to him, and a visit from granddaughter Ivonne MacMillan who along with her husband Gavin introduced Earl to their first-born child, Earl’s great-grandson, Parker MacMillan, earlier this year. Despite Earl’s health challenges he made and distributed his signature Christmas peanut brittle, with the help of longtime friend and Mobil alum Tim Jones.

In addition to wife Peggy, of Dallas, son David (Elsa) and granddaughter Ivonne (Gavin), of Plantation, FL, Earl is survived by his sister Frances Richardson and her many family members, including her son Bob Richardson (Rayanne), and grandson Raymond Richardson, all of Tacoma, WA; his nephews Chris Klasing (Debbie) of Greenville, SC and Wayne Klasing (Barbara) of Kerrville, TX; and his nieces Cindy Callins (George) and Sandy Klein (Paul), of San Antonio, Texas. A memorial service will be held later. A donation in Earl’s memory may be made to VNA Hospice Care, 1(800) CALL-VNA or online at gethelp@vnatexas.org.

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