Leo J. Sneyd,90, of Sarasota, Fla., the brother of a Peoria woman, died Sunday, Oct. 21, 2012 at his residence in Sarasota. He was born Dec. 1, 1921, in Pontiac, Ill., and was a graduate of Chatsworth High School. Leo enlisted in the Army in 1941 and volunteered for glider pilot school when the U.S. declared war on Germany. He was commissioned flight officer in 1943 and made four landings in Normandy, southern France, Arnhem and Bastogne. He was medically retired in 1946. In his younger years, he was an avid fisherman, especially for tarpon. In later years he enjoyed the challenges of golf.
Leo moved to Sarasota in 1954 and worked as a paint and wallpaper contractor, establishing Rainbow Painting & Decorating. He sold the company and retired in 1983. He was a member of St. Martha's Catholic Church from 1955 to 2010 and St. Jude Catholic Church since 2010. He was a member of the National World War II Glider Pilots Association and the Military Officers Association of Sarasota; a born member of the Gulf Cost Builder's Exchange; and a founding member of the private Gator Creek Golf Club.
He is survived by his sister, Dorothy Totten of Peoria, Ill.; daughter and son-in-law, Jo Ann and Harmon Heed of Sarasota; stepson, Gene Cusella and wife, Myra; son, Nicholas and daughter, Blair, of Land O' Lakes, Fla.; and best friends, Ron and Mary Helen of Sarasota, Fla. Services will be private, with inurnment in Florida Nation Cemetery along side his wife. In lieu of flowers, please make donations to your favorite charity. To sign the guest book visit www.palmsroberts-funeralhome.com.