Local family is five generations strong

Submitted Photo Great-great grandmother Erla Truby holding one-and-a-half year-old great-great granddaughter Lily Snellings.

SILVER CREEK — When it comes to family lineage, having five generations under one roof is a pretty amazing feat no matter how you slice it. One such family remains very close and resides right here in Western New York.

The family consists of Erla Truby, 91, Wendy Fox, 69, Tammy Spade, 49, Anthony Snellings, 31, and Lily Snellings, 18 months old. Truby and Fox live in Silver Creek, while Spade and the Snellings live in Eden. Although not all living under one roof, the five generation family focuses on spending as much time together as possible.

“We’re every 20 or 30 years apart, depending on who we’re comparing or talking about,” Spade said, in a recent phone interview with the OBSERVER. “We’re all biologically-related, nobody’s a step-anything and we’re all much closer in age than people tend to think and that’s surprising to a lot of people.”

Spade, a nurse at Brooks Memorial Hospital in Dunkirk, cherishes the blessing of having such a unique span of generations in her immediate family.

“When you really sit down and think about it, it’s incredible to think about the lifespans interweaving,” Spade noted.

Submitted Photo From back to front, five generation family members Tammy Spade, 49, Wendy Fox, 69, Anthony Snellings, 31, and Erla Truby, 91, holding Lily Snellings, 18 months old.

With roughly 90 years between baby Lily and family matriarch, great-great grandma Truby, the relationship between the two is certainly something special all its own.

“We don’t really know how long Lily will actually know her great-great grandma because she’s so little,” Spade said of Lily and Truby’s relationship. “It’s just great that she gets to have an experience like this.”

Truby, who turns 92 in June, raised 11 children as a homemaker, including Fox.

“She raised 11 kids while her husband worked at the Ford plant,” Spade said of Truby and her husband. “He passed away 15 years ago…It’s remarkable to think about what she’s seen and done in her life.”

Talking about life experience between generations is fascinating and a great way for the family to bond. When the five are all in one room, those kind of family values are front and center.

“We’re a really close family,” Spade commented. “You don’t think about the generational gap a lot when we’re all together because we’re just people who love and care for each other.”

The family also keeps a number of Easter traditions as well.

Spade’s son, Anthony, aims to continue a tradition in the family as well, as he is currently studying to be a nurse like his mother. As for Fox, she was a regional manager for Walmart Photos up until her retirement.

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