Norman Louis Knocke

  • "Knocke Family, So sorry for your loss. Sending prayers for..."
    - Robin Kruckenberg
  • "Knocke family, I am very sorry for your loss. I have so..."
    - Ellen Collins
  • "Joel, You are in our thoughts and prayers during this time...."
  • "Rest Norman, until you hear at dawn, the low, clear..."
    - Harry Simpson
  • "Sadly, the world has lost another true gentlemen and..."
    - David Norris

Knocke, Norman Louis, 91, longtime Boeing employee and Wichita community volunteer, died on Thursday, May 8, 2014, in McPherson, Kansas. Visitation will be Tuesday, May 13, from 6-8 p.m. at Downing & Lahey Mortuary East. Interment is at 10 a.m. Wednesday, May 14, at White Chapel Memorial Gardens, followed by a memorial service and reception at 2 p.m. at Holy Cross Lutheran Church, 600 N. Greenwich, Wichita, KS 67206. A second memorial service will be at 2 p.m., Thursday, May 15, 2014, at Trinity Lutheran Church, 119 N. Elm Street, McPherson, KS, 67460. He is survived by his wife, Shirley Horine Knocke, whom he married in 2008. He was predeceased by his first wife of 61 years, Wilberta Marie Knocke of Wichita, in 2006. He was born in Pawnee Rock near Great Bend, KS, on April 15, 1923, the eldest of seven children. During World War II, he flew B-17 and B-24 bombers and continued for a year after the war to fly a wide variety of military aircraft to a desert storage facility near Tucson, Arizona. From 1946 to 1962, he served in the U.S. Air Force reserve, rising to the rank of captain. He studied aeronautical engineering at Wichita State University and joined the staff at Boeing in 1948, where he worked for 40 years, retiring in 1988. Mr. Knocke was also among the earliest members of Holy Cross Lutheran Church in Wichita, where he and his first wife were active on the Evangelism Committee and which he served as congregational President and Elder. Other community efforts included 16 years with the Downtown Lion's Club and volunteering at the Wichita Air Museum. In 2008, he and his wife Shirley moved to McPherson and joined Trinity Lutheran Church, where they have been active members. In addition to his wife, he is survived by three children from his first marriage: son, Wayne (Kay) of Phoenix; daughter, Cynthia (Michael) Atwood of Middletown, CT; and son, Joel (Veronica) of San Antonio; seven grandchildren and ten great-grandchildren. He also is survived by a stepson from his second marriage, Rick (Debra) Davison of McPherson; two step-grandchildren and two stepgreat-grandchildren. Other survivors include his four brothers: Walter (Betty) of Bella Vista, AR; Erwin (Fern) of Arkansas City, KS; Maurice (Elizabeth) of Champaign, IL; and Ronald (Patricia) of Hot Springs Village, AR; plus many nieces and nephews. He is predeceased by two sisters, Leola and Marilyn. As the beloved patriarch of a large and close family, he will be greatly missed for his wisdom and warmth. The family wishes to thank his church friends and his caregivers for their loving support. In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts may be made to Holy Cross Lutheran or Trinity Lutheran churches at the above addresses. Share tributes online at:

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Downing & Lahey Mortuary, Inc.
6555 EAST CENTRAL WICHITA, KS 67206-1924
(316) 682-4553
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Published in The Wichita Eagle on May 11, 2014
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