Lifelong Alaska resident Francis Andrew “Bud” Knapp, died Thursday, June 7, 2007, at his home in Kasilof. He was 73.
Funeral services will be held at 1 p.m. Thursday, June 14 at Peninsula Memorial Chapel, 5839 Kenai Spur Highway in Kenai. He will be laid to rest at Spruce Grove Memorial Park in Kasilof. A celebration of life will follow at the Knapp residence, Mile 4.5 of Kalifornsky Beach Road. Pallbearers will include sons, Andy, Joe, Jerry, Ross and Carl Knapp, and his son-in-law, Chad Mills. Honorary pallbearers will include Frank Stein, Marv Mattson, Bob Stevenson, Kevin “Bruno” Deglin and Ernie Hillman.
Mr. Knapp was born March 10, 1934, to Frank and Nellie (Ferrera) Knapp where he was raised on a fox farm on the Little Noatak River, Alaska. At the age of 13 he attended White Mountain Boarding School and graduated from Mount Edgecumbe High School in 1953. He joined the U.S. Army and served honorably from June 1953 to May 1955 until he was discharged.
He married Josephine “Jo” Shaefer on April 6, 1955. He fathered eight children in the next 10 and a half years of his life, while working as a security guard, bus driver, fisherman, heavy equipment operator and contractor. He worked and retired out of the I.B.E.W. Union after 30 years. He was raised in the subsistence lifestyle. He enjoyed hunting and fishing until late in his life.
“He was loved by many and was well known for his prowess at telling stories. The twinkle in his eyes kept people wondering what mischief he was up to next. His natural music talents enabled him to play any musical instrument he picked up,” his family said.
Mr. Knapp and his wife, Jo, lived in many places in Alaska, Washington and California, including Sitka, Juneau, Petersburg, Hoonah, Anchorage, and Auke Bay. After living in various places around the United States they settled in Kasilof for the last 14 years, all the while providing for his family.
During his time on the peninsula the couple owned and operated A Wilderness Store for many years, which was a gathering place for family, friends and neighbors. They closed the doors of the store in 2005 due to illness.
Mr. Knapp was preceded in death by his parents; sister, Dorothy “Doe Doe” Volkheimer; and brother, William “Bill” Knapp.
He is survived by his loving wife of 52 years of Kasilof; sons, Andy of Kasilof, Joe of California, Jerry of Kasilof, Ross of Kasilof and Carl of Palmer; daughters, Denice Knapp of Anchorage, Nellie Knapp-Mills of Marysville, Wash. and Natalia Knapp of Tulalip, Wash.; 12 grandchildren; one great-granddaughter; and many nieces and nephews.
Arrangements were made by Peninsula Memorial Chapel.
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