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When not ministering, Knoll gardened — his father ran a greenhouse as he was growing up — tending to his geraniums and other seasonal flowers. He often shared gardening tips and knowledge with his daughter-in-law, Gretchen.
And he loved sports, cheering for his beloved Chicago teams as well as the Indianapolis Colts and Indiana Pacers.
Knoll adored his 2-year-old granddaughter, Charlotte, and shared with her his love of Disney’s “Dumbo” — a movie she’s asked to watch several times since he fell ill.
Around mid-March, he developed a cough he initially attributed to allergies. But it persisted, and a pneumonia diagnosis soon followed.
He was hospitalized on breathing support for about two weeks, Jon said. When it was evident he was going to pass, his care team at Franciscan Health arranged a Zoom call for the family and their pastors. They said the Lord’s Prayer and a final blessing.
After saying goodbye, Knoll’s wife, son and family recited his favorite hymn, “I Know that My Redeemer Lives.”
He lives to silence all my fears; He lives to wipe away my tears; He lives to calm my troubled heart; He lives all blessings to impart.
By the time they finished singing, he was gone.
“He always told people whenever somebody died, they’ve got the victory in Jesus,” Jon said, “and that’s what we’ll remember.”
Contributed by the Indianapolis Star
Provided Patricia “Patty” Connor
Name: Patricia “Patty” Connor