Edward Woodside Snelling

Bill Stalvey
May 11, 2019

I met this incredible man in 1982 at the Omni International hotel. He was so different; He was the epitome of what A United States Marine should look like. His discipline was like none other. He exercised every day and he always offered the most solid advice. I never heard him curse in front of me and we played numerous rounds of golf; always going by and treating people by the Marine Core values. He will never be forgotten!! Col. Snelling was my direct supervisor at two different jobs, he assisted me getting into Law Enforcement, and I am so fortunate to call this Man, my friend. Why this Marine was not Commadant of USMC is beyond me. Behind every great man, is an incredible woman. God bless Sue and her son. 
Col. Ed Snelling, what a service to this country, what a hero, and more importantly, what a Great Man. Will always love you Colonel.
Bill Stalvey

Daniel McCready
May 2, 2019

Met the Col in 2007,from then on we became good friends. Would speak on the phone about once a week. When we would all get together for our mini-reunions,he brought a smile that could lighten up a room.  Always concerned about you and your family.  We lost a wonderful comrade.  The Three Amigo's are together again (Ed, Duane and Ron). 
Condolences to his wife Sue and son Kelley.

Jeff Fisher
May 1, 2019

Colonel Snelling was an exceptional Marine officer who served with great distinction and a true southern gentleman with all the good that the word implies.  I will miss him and I know we will all be a little poorer without him in our community and our lives.
Semper Fidelis and God speed Colonel!

Kent Hughes
April 30, 2019

My tour in South Vietnam as tank platoon commander of BLT 3/26, later redesignated 3rd Battalion, 26th Marines (Reinforced), began immediately before then-Lt. Col. Snelling assumed command of the battalion and ended only weeks after he left it. It was my great privilege to serve under this wonderful, supportive combat leader and wonderful man, and to have been with him a number times in the past 12 years, most recently in 2013. Colonel Snelling was a personally modest, genteel officer, professionally demanding but always concerned with the welfare and morale of his Marines and, in the ensuing years, our welfare and that of our families. At a dinner in 2007 he turned my question into the circumstances of his receiving the Navy Cross by saying "Well, we can talk about that sometime, Kent, but how are your boys?"  Colonel Snelling is one of the finest men I have ever known, and I will miss him very much.
Semper fi, Sir!

Sandi Crawford
April 29, 2019

I am the only child of Duane E. Crawford, Ret, Major USMC.  Sadly, I never had the pleasure of meeting Colonel Snelling but talked to him often on the phone. A true southern gentleman and officer.  Every time I spoke with him, my military upbringing came out and I spoke with him in the proper manner. He would always say, "Sandi, I'm no longer a Colonel and not a "sir", you can call me by my first name."  My response was always, "No Sir, that I cannot do my Daddy taught me to show respect and you Sir, indeed, have my utmost respect.  Daddy spoke often and fondly of serving with the Colonel and the memories he shared with him and "their boys." The day Daddy was to leave to go stateside, he told the Colonel he wanted to re-up for another tour.  Colonel said, "Son, you can put in for it but I won't approve it.  You've seen enough war and carnage."  Daddy told me years later, that his decision probably saved his life.  I will repeat what my dad used to tell me.  Colonel Ed Snelling was a Marines Marine.  He was a man above men.  He will be sorely missed but always remembered.  God be with you, Sue and Kelley during this difficult time.  RIP Colonel Snelling. 
​Sandra L. Crawford

Larry C. Tasby
April 22, 2019

I was Mike Company, 3rd Platoon Commander, under the leadership of Duane E. Crawford , 1968-1969, when Colonel Snelling took over 3/26, as the Battalion Commander.  He was taking command at the time my platoon was on the point of a Night March or Movement to save Kilo Company from total annihilation on 2/28- 3/1/69.  They were surrounded by the NVA that had trapped them in a horseshoe shaped ambush.  We saved many Marines that morning.  Colonel Snelling told our Commanding Officer, 1st Lt. Crawford that Mike Company would get the next rest and rehab break.  He was a man of his word and everyone respected him.  He was a field Marine and the Grunts loved him.  My platoon members could not believe it, when we rotated back to Battalion to provide security.  Based on the extended combat of Mike Company, we needed that break before the next operation kicked off.  Thank you Colonel Snelling.  Semper Fi.
Captain Larry C. Tasby, USMC Retired

Chris Tibbs
April 22, 2019

During my tour with 3/26 in RVN, a time of participation in non-stop operations throughout I Corps, Col. Snelling stood out as truly a significant leader of Marines who, by his calm, determined presence alone, kept moral high regardless of the difficulties faced.  Always at the front, never commanding from the rear.  His gracious style in caring for 'his' Marines, and their families, through all the years following that war became important to many as they moved ahead in building their lives.  I and all who knew this man have been truly blessed to have been in his presence and thoughts.  He remains with us all.I and all who knew this man have been truly blessed to have been in his presence and thoughts. He remains with us all. 
Sir, Semper Fi!

Kenneth Cheslack
April 20, 2019

Ed is a special friend to me and I will very much miss him.
We had many lunches together and long talks about everything.
Road trips were one of the things we liked to do together.
He always enjoyed having lunch with Marines from 3/26 when they were in town.
That was the only time he would pull rank on us.  We were his Marines.
As time went on I would visit him and Sue at home for snacks and drinks.
My last visit was 4/13 after having lunch with Jim, Tom and Mick (3/26 Marines) they wanted me to say they missed not having him with us for lunch.
My wife passed away in Aug. and Ed was a rock for me as Claire was special to Ed.
Sue and Kelly are in my prayers.
With his passing our friendship doesn't end, just grows stronger.

Michael Popelka
April 20, 2019

Dear Sue and Kelly,

Charlie Battery had the good fortune and honor of serving under Colonel Snelling in BLT 3/26.  We were on a firebase supporting 3/26 in the Arizona Territory when Colonel Snelling assumed command of 3/26.  Our link to 3/26 was by radio.  Even with the impersonal communications, it was obvious that Colonel Snelling was making a positive difference.  It was not until the preparations for Operation Oklahoma Hills that I actually met Colonel Snelling personally.  I then understood how he so motivated everyone.  Colonel Snelling was the the best Commanding Officer I knew during my two tours in Vietnam.  Colonel Snelling was a leader from the front.  He was competent and had an aura about him that invoked confidence and motivated you to do your best even under the most dire conditions.  Colonel Snelling was the epitome of a Marine and gentleman.  He was a gracious and humble man.  Colonel Snelling focused on you when you talked to him.  He never bragged of his accomplishments.  He would never bring up the Navy Cross he earned in Korea and yet this man was the leader and man each one of us wanted to emulate.  It was a proud moment to receive the Honorable Order of Saint Barbara.  I am especially proud that it was on his recommendation.  At the Chattanooga Reunion, my wife, Sarah, and I learned that he had lived in Greenville, SC.  We listened to him talking about Greenville.  We have visited Greenville many times to visit my wife's father.  Sarah found a book on Greenville and sent it to Colonel Snelling.  He later told us that he enjoyed the book.  We were pleased to do something for him.  I am very grateful to Sue and Kelly for sharing Colonel Snelling.  Being our leader took him physically away from you.
Very Respectfully,
Michael Popelka

Don Buford
April 20, 2019

I served under Col. Snelling in 3rd. Battalion, 26th Marines in Viet Nam.  Our battalion was one of the top combat battalions in Viet Nam and we did our best work under his command.  There was never any question that he would do anything to support his Marines. As communications chief of India Co.  I had very little personal contact with the Colonel but was aware of what was going on with our battalion.  Col. Snelling was a smart and decisive commander that always listened to his staff and then made the best decisions available to complete our objective without putting his Marines at more risk than necessary.  I was pleased when he attended the reunion in Chattanooga so I could thank him personally for his leadership. I was pleased when he attended the reunion in Chattanooga so I could thank him personally for his leadership.
Semper Fi Colonel,
Don Buford, former corporal and India 2-8, 3/26th Marines


Roswell Funeral Home
Roswell, GA

Col. Edward Woodside Snelling was born on November 22, 1923 in Greenville, South Carolina and passed away on April 14, 2019 in Roswell, Georgia.

The following memories comes from the obituary notice of Colonel Snelling from Roswell Funeral Home in Rosswell, GA.
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Colonel Snelling was the Battalion Commander of the 3rd Battalion, 26th Marine Regiment from March 4, 1969 to September 15, 1969.