Remembering Christopher Knorr 
(
July 20, 1942, to July 26, 2012)

  

            "Once a Sailor, Always a Sailor!"
  

By Howie Levy

  

Our dear friend, Chris Knorr, was one of our most likeable and popular Sailors (especially with the ladies).

Born in Brooklyn, Christopher George Knorr, III,  he grew up with us in Oceanside, New York. As a junior and as a senior in high school, he was a member of our varsity soccer team that, in its 1958-'59 season, with a 15-0-0 record, won the Nassau County and LI South Shore championships.

  

With his 6th grade class (top row), 1953

  

1958 (left to right): Howie Kitt and (the now late) Art Heyman ('59), Chris and Tom Millot ('60), selected by the coaches to the South Shore Athletic League Division All-Scholastic team

   

Chris eventually settled in New Jersey where he raised six children, two of whom (a daughter, Andrea, and a son, James) tragically predeceased him. On July 26, 2012, Chris eventually succumbed  himself to a complication of his treatment for

leukemia after battling the disease valiantly for over ten years.

A devoted family man, Chris was survived by his beloved and loving wife Karen, four remaining sons, who were a great source of pride for him, Michael, Christopher (IV), Adam and Peter. He is also survived by a stepson, Christopher McNabb, and his sister, Andrea (a/ka Andi or now, Dee) Knorr Mulzer (Oceanside High School, '62), ten grandchildren, one great grandchild, two nieces and a nephew. (His family affectionately called him "Pops.")

Despite the tragedies and illness he endured, Chris always maintained a positive, upbeat, optimistic attitude and a joi d'vive that made him a delight to be around. "His most outstanding accomplishment was being the best and most amazing brother a sister could have, and I will miss him terribly," said Andi (Dee), his only sister.

 

  

 
    
   

   

Chris as a young man:         1966

 

 1970

   
    

   

 1970s

  Circa 2000, with wife, Karen    
   

 

With with sister, Andi (Dee), circa 2007

   

Chris made his living as a district manager for Best Foods in Englewood Cliffs, NJ. And he devoted countless volunteer hours to helping others.

   

Again, according to Andi (Dee), "At his memorial service, there were several who shared what a difference he made in their lives through his work in AA." He was also an active volunteer in his community in the Sunshine Foundation, an organization with the sole purpose of answering the dreams of seriously or chronically ill, physically challenged and abused children. The following brief composite of comments posted online after his passing by Chris's co-volunteers at the Sunshine Foundation and his co-workers  captures the essence of Chris Knorr:

"A very sweet, most loving, caring and giving man ─ one of those people everyone loved to be around. His charismatic personality, kind, genuine and sincere interest in others made him a treasured friend to all."


                                  Volunteering with the Sunshine Foundation, 2010

  

Because of his love for children and his lifelong passion for boating and fishing (once a Sailor, always a Sailor), Chris chaired the Foundation's annual area fishing tournament that raised thousands of dollars each year to send terminally ill children and their families on vacations.

  

         

Some early family boating

 

   
  

          

      
    

Always a Sailor to his salty core, like so many others, Chris loved our class and he loved our reunions. Unable to stay for the Saturday night main event for our 45th, Chris told us in 2005, "It was wonderful to get to see everyone. I hope we have a 50th.  I won't miss a minute of it." And he didn't.

And Andi (Dee) wrote us and said,

"I just wanted to let you know how much he loved the class reunions and appreciated all the efforts you and his classmates made to get all of you together. We would have long talks on the phone, and he would tell me who he saw and what the latest news was on his old friends. I loved hearing how everyone was doing. I'd always ask him about Fran Caporaso, Penny White, Bev Barnes, and Nancy Koller. Those were just a few of the names I could remember. He told me on the phone what a good conversation he had with Penny White at the last reunion. He was already very sick but was determined to go ... [and] to beat the cancer right up to the end!  He always had a positive attitude about life."

Selected reunion photos follow:

   

2010 (50 years after OHS):

 

Friday:

 

 

with (l. to r.) Harvey Tauber, Sue Rooder, Carole Cohen and Dave Schwarz      

  and with  Carol  Johnson, Penny White and Howie Levy
  

Saturday night:

  

   

with Penny White,  

  with (l. to r.) Bob Renselaer and Ray Martinis,   and with a special guest

  

The gang from Oak  School No. 3

 

2005 (45 years after OHS):
 

   
  Friday afternoon at Nathan's Famous (left to right): Chris,  then Jeff Tilford, the (now late) Hal Wilensky, Tom Nasca,
(the back of) Carolyn Asher and Kathy Cullen
 
  

Friday afternoon, touring OHS

  

Friday night with Pete Wittemann, Terry Brennan, Chris and Bob Rubin

  

1990 (30 years after OHS):
 

Friday night with Doreen Silverstein

  

Below are expressions of fond remembrance received from some of our classmates upon learning of Chris's untimely passing:
  

That's really terrible, terrible news. I thought the world of Chris also. What a shame, what a shame! Can't stand getting news like this. Doreen will be very upset also; she was very fond of him. ― Jay Katz
  

Well, this is very sad news. I keep picturing that great face of his. I don't know what to say this one really hurts. ― Doreen Silverstein

   

Thoughts about Chris ― after 50 plus years:

 

      
 
Tall
  
 
Brush cut/flat-top
    
 
All county soccer star
  
  S
oft-spoken
   
 
Yvonne Svendsen. ― Bill Schmidt
  

 

So sorry to hear of Chris Knorr's passing. Of course, he and I did not run in the same crowd since I was bit of a "geek" and barely in anyone's crowd. Nevertheless, I have a vivid memory of Chris. I had managed to get included at some party (cause of Joe Kunkel?) maybe on graduation night? Probably before it was early evening, warm weather in someone's backyard with lights strung up and music playing. Chris tall, blonde, handsome, popular known as a terrific dancer was dancing with Bev Barnes, and we all circled around to admire them. The Coasters were playing "Searchin'" was the song and I always associate "Searchin'" with that moment! Bev and Chris were dancing a slow, graceful Oceanside-style lindy (no bouncing!) they were both the ultimate in cool. She was beautiful, and he was leading her perfectly through all the moves arms overhead, underhand behind the back straight out  and then circling back together in tandem, neither missing a step. I admired them SO MUCH! I wanted to BE them at that moment a moment now frozen in time in my mind as the quintessential teenage experience of the 1950s. Although I did not know him in later life, I easily recognized him in the later website photos since he was very much of part of the class reunion activities. His refined, musical, athletic persona must have carried over into adulthood. He was always cordial and kind to me, as I am sure he was to others. May he rest in peace. Joe's and my sympathy go to Karen and the family. ― Gerda Balding (Kunkel)
     

I was so sad to hear today of Chris's passing. We spent a lot of time catching up at the last reunion, and I was stunned by his weight loss at the time, but he never mentioned an illness. I came to know his depth of character more fully at that reunion.  An amazing guy!  He was so proud of his family and their work with the Sunshine Foundation. I was very fond of his sister, Andi, and appreciated their loving dynamic way back when.  I'm so glad I got to see him one more time at the 50th. ― Penny White
  
   

It's always a sad day when I learn about yet another of our OHS classmates passing. I had spoken to Chris at our 50th reunion and told him that I had a crush on him in grade school . Upon hearing this, he quipped, "Why didn't you tell me THEN?!" Wellbecause I was 11 or 12 and SCARED to admit that kind of feeling for one of the best-looking (I felt)boys in my school! DUH!! I guess it's inevitable that we'll learn about the passing of more and more classmates as the years go by, but the news usually brings about a bittersweet memoryglad Chris (AND Hal Wilensky) could make it to the 50th. ― Lynne Oliver
   

    

Chris was a very competitive athlete, and I had the pleasure of playing soccer and other sports with him for many years. He was a true leader whom we could count on to inspire and motivate us.  He will be missed by all who knew and loved him. Bob Schwartz (now deceased)
  

    

Count me among the many girls who once had a crush on Chris. I sat behind him in homeroom and looked forward to his handsome smiling face and witty quips and observations each morning. At the last reunion, he and I spoke of the significant events that have shaped our lives. We all have poignant stories to tell. His sister, Andi, lives close to us in Florida, and Chris promised to look us up when he visited her. Jack and I regret that our visit never happened.  Rest in peace, Chris. Nancy Koller (Beaulieu)
   

    

This sad news of the passing of Chris Knorr really hit me hard. At this very difficult time, my love and sincere sympathy go out to his sweet sister, Andi, to his wife, and to all the others in his large and extended family. I will forever hold dear the fond memories of Chris and the good times we spent together. He will continue to be, in my memory, the handsome, kind, athletic, fun-loving individual who always remained a gentleman.  Bev Barnes
  
  

After previewing this memorial page, Chris' sister Andi (Dee) had this to say:

"The memorial page is a beautiful tribute to my brother.  I really think the page is perfect just the way it is. Thank you so much  for all the effort you have made to do this and for adding all the reunion pictures of him. It brought me to tears to see him with old friends. I loved reading the comments of his OHS friends."

    
Chris' family suggests that donations made in his memory to Sunshine Foundation, Feasterville, PA would be a great way to honor our old friend. Go to http://www.sunshinefoundation.org/.

  
Come back to this special memorial page now and then when you are thinking of Chris or to see if anything has been added. And if you would like to add anything about Chris, please write me.

Classmates and other visitors are invited to submit material for a special
memorial page like this for any other departed classmate. Just e-mail it to me.

      Howie   

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