Myrna Snider Thomas, 78, former wife of Flyers owner

Myrna Snider Thomas
Myrna Snider Thomas
Posted: May 25, 2014

Myrna Snider Thomas, 78, of Philadelphia and Boothbay Harbor, Maine, a charity fund-raiser and former wife of Flyers owner Edward M. Snider, died Thursday, May 22, of lung cancer at Fox Chase Cancer Center.

Born in Baltimore, she graduated in 1954 from Calvin Coolidge High School in Washington and soon after married Snider, chairman of Comcast Spectacor, the sports and entertainment company that owns the Flyers professional hockey team.

Her family said that in the early years, Mrs. Snider Thomas helped her husband develop the hockey team, which was similar to an extended family. She was especially popular with the players' wives.

"She was the first lady of hockey during the Flyers' Stanley Cup years, establishing a family culture with the organization that made a lasting impression on the players and their families," her relatives said in a tribute.

In 1963, the couple moved to Wynnewood. They had four children before divorcing in 1981.

In 2001, she married Martin G. Thomas, a master sailor and sea captain. The couple sailed around the world for two decades, at times with family and friends aboard her 100-foot yacht, Sintra.

She took care of her elderly mother, Shirley Gordon, and her brother, Howard Gordon, who was born with Down syndrome. Her mother died five years ago. Her brother died in 2013 of a spinal cord ailment.

Mrs. Snider Thomas formed the Howard Fund in her brother's memory. The fund supports Camp PALS, a summer program for the Down syndrome community in Philadelphia and across the country.

Mrs. Snider Thomas was very much a free spirit.

"Myrna was personable, spontaneous, whimsical and spirited, and she enchanted all those who came in contact with her," said her family. "She loved artists, musicians and writers, travel - and most of all, people from all walks of life."

She designed and built two custom homes on the coast of Maine, using barn-board and beams she had kept in storage for 30 years.

Surviving, besides her two former husbands, are sons Craig and Jay; daughters Lindy and Tina; 15 grandchildren; and her identical twin sister, Dobbie G. Kristoff. Another sister died earlier.

A funeral will be at 11 a.m. Sunday, May 25, at Bringhurst Funeral Home at West Laurel Hill Cemetery, 225 Belmont Ave., Bala Cynwyd. Interment will follow in the cemetery.

The family will receive visitors from 2 to 6 p.m. Sunday at the residence of daughter Lindy Snider. Shiva will continue Monday, May 26, and Tuesday, May 27, from 4 to 8 p.m. at the home.

Contributions may be made to the Howard Fund, c/o PALS Programs, 12 Dow Drive, Hillsborough, N.J. 08844, or via www.palsprograms.org/howard.


bcook@phillynews.com

610-313-8102

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