Eric C Snowdeal III - a Brilliant, Creative, Funny, and Socially Conscious, Unwavering Liberal, left his 6’4” frame with a size 13 footprint much too soon for those of us who knew him, appreciated him, and loved him so very deeply. It is impossible to capture all that he was to so many people in a few paragraphs. The world lost an incredible light unexpectedly on July 6, 2021, at age 49.
To say this man was brilliant is an understatement — he was a genius. He could learn, understand, and master just about anything he set his mind to. He was a magnificent, self-taught guitar player who would spontaneously create the most magical compositions, but warned the listener he’d probably not be able to recreate it. He and Kris were foodies before ‘foodies’ were a thing and loved exploring new dishes and methods of cooking, which were led by their joint interest in the environment and sustainable agriculture. Bioinformatics being part of his graduate work, technology and its integration into the various facets of our lives was always a main area of study and interest to Eric. An early adopter, he and his friend created public wifi spaces in Chicago, IL when the idea itself was still in its infancy. He ran a popular blog through snowdeal.org for 18 years, with sections dedicated to his analysis of current research in areas of science and technology, as well as his experiences with marathon running, relocating, traveling, photography, and ultimately the journey of his only child, Eric C Snowdeal IV aka Odin, who was born at 24 weeks in 2004. Eric’s daily writings about his family’s experiences of Odin’s early days as a micro-preemie, the constant research he did to help his own son went out to a larger community of people on a similar journey, offering total strangers information, support and hope. While he carried a few close friendships throughout his life, through his writing, Eric developed connections with people all over the world.
Eric would agree that the greatest demonstration of his intelligence was choosing Kris as his life partner. They were together for 7 years before finally marrying in1998. That may seem like a long time to make a decision, but as Eric told it, it took them 7 years to decide what toaster to buy. Together they’ve experienced many adventures, the most wonderful being the birth of their son, Odin, who decided to make his entrance early. For months Eric and Kris never left Odin’s bedside in the NICU. Today, Odin is a healthy, strong, athletic, talented, intelligent, young man admired and loved by Eric and Kris.
Eric was a tremendous storyteller. Perhaps genetically predisposed due to his Maine roots, he could really spin a yarn. They were often self-effacing and told with a wry humor and wit that turned a mundane experience, like showing up to the hardware store to buy lumber with an L.L. Bean tape measure, into commentary on the American experience. He was also an excellent photographer. Joining Flickr when it was still a beta project, Eric’s photographs received many followers as well as reprint in national and international publications. For him though, it was another way of telling a really good story.
After graduate school and a few years at Motorola, Eric could have gone anywhere and done anything; he was sought after by many well-known corporations, but Eric was led by his values. Inspired by an article in the Utne Reader and a dream Eric had, Eric and Kris travelled to Wisconsin 15 years ago to check out a tiny little town where a collective of people gathered who were dedicated to sustainable farming, progressive ideals and practices. That weekend they put an offer on a house, returned home, packed up their belongings in a u-haul and Eric’s prized ’65 Galaxy, and relocated to Viroqua, WI from Grand Rapids, MI (a travel adventure that only Eric could tell). Shortly after their arrival, Eric began his career with Organic Valley working to promote their products and cooperative farming practices throughout the U.S.
While projects involving tools might be Eric’s one foil (and an endless source of great stories), Eric constructed an amazing treehouse for Odin in their backyard. Installing a projector and making the world’s greatest popcorn, many movies have been viewed by kids and adults in that treehouse. He also built an authentic Finnish sauna for Kris and a coop for her chickens. His favorite place though was sitting by the fire pit to think, reflect and talk with Kris.
Eric’s passing leaves many people with a hole in their heart -- his father Eric C Snowdeal II, step-mother, Sondra Snowdeal and his mother, Sherry Rier, siblings Monica Stone, Candy Rosenbaum, Keith Lutz, Jason Bridges, Jacob Bridges and Elizabeth Bridges, nieces, nephews, in-laws, friends, colleagues…but the two most important people in Eric’s universe, and who are experiencing the greatest loss, are Kris Snowdeal (Salmi), Eric’s wife and best friend and his beloved son, Odin.
You are so loved and will be greatly missed, Eric C Snowdeal III, but you will live on through our memories, your stories, and your beautiful family.
Celebration of Life Eric C Snowdeal III August 28, 2021
Family will be hosting a celebration of Eric’s life. The Celebration of Life for Eric C Snowdeal III will take place on August 28, 2021 from 2:00-6:00p at Eckhart Park, Viroqua, WI. Please join his family to share in stories, music, food, drink, community and remembrance. For those traveling: There is a block of rooms available at Vernon Inn & Suites [1325 N. Main St. Viroqua, WI 54664]. Call (608) 637-3100 or (800) 501-0664. Block name: Snowdeal. The Vernon County Fairgrounds have campsites for tents, campers & RVs. Call (608) 632-3704 to reserve a spot. LaCrosse, Wisconsin is the closest airport (LSE) for flights. Madison, Wisconsin (MSN) is about a 90 minute drive from Viroqua. If you have any questions feel free to contact Regina Salmi email@example.com | (616) 915-6050
In lieu of flowers, donations to help support Eric’s family including Odin’s future education can be sent in Eric’s memory to 314 East Court St. Viroqua, WI 54665 or sent electronically via Venmo to @Kristine-Snowdeal.
The Roth Family Cremation Center is serving the family.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Eric C Snowdeal III, please visit our floral store.