Juanita E. Knapp
Aug. 9, 1925- Sept 10, 2020
Juanita Elizabeth Knapp, age 95, of Ida, Michigan passed away peacefully in her home surrounded by family on September 10, 2020.
You might have called her Mom or Grandma, Aunt or Juanita but to all, she was the staple in everyone’s lives, always there for encouraging words, a warm embrace, and to help identify every bird out the window. She is still remembered by adults now for putting up with the kid’s hayrides and bonfires back in the day and being the helpful librarian with the friendly smile.
Mrs. Juanita (Albright) Knapp, turned 95 years young on August 9, had been a Michigan resident for 75 years. Born in Kokomo, Indiana in 1925, her travels began when she moved to California with her family in the early 1930’s. After her mother’s death in 1935, Juanita, then age 10 and her sister, age 11, traveled alone by train to her aunt’s in Elwood, Indiana where she graduated from Wendell Willkie High School.
In 1944, Juanita moved to Camp Hood, Texas with her sister, brother-in-law and newborn nephew. Some of her favorite times were serving in the Officer’s Club, where the piano player would play the song “Juanita” whenever he needed something. She later moved to Anderson, Indiana, where she worked at Guide Lamp Company making shells and machine gun parts embodying the true “Rosie the Riveter” persona.
On December 21, 1947, Juanita married Wilbert Knapp and moved to the family farm in Ida, Michigan. Here they raised 3 daughters and a lot of dairy cows. Along with upholding the ‘farm-wife’ duties, she worked as a substitute librarian in various Monroe County branches and eventually full-time at Dorsch Memorial Library from which she retired. Great- Grandson Tyler Clare and Grandson Brian Clare will continue the legacy of the family farm.
Juanita traveled throughout the United States, England, Israel, Jordan and Greece. She was a member of the Michigan Farm Bureau, a lifetime member of the Monroe County Fair Association and was the oldest member of the Ida United Methodist Church.
Juanita was an avid painter. The painting she was most known for is the picture of the family farm. A copy of this painting enhanced the 2’ x 3’ sign that hung over the farm’s dairy cows and calves when they were shown by her great grandsons at the Monroe County Fair.
She is survived by her 3 daughters Kathleen (William) Flaishans, Susan (Elicia) Knapp, and Jean (Mark) Duvall, 6 grandchildren, Brian Clare, Wendy Flaishans, Jennifer Mack, Ali (Joe) Brown, Sigourney (Stephen) Budd, and Torey Duvall, 14 great-grandchildren, 12 great-great grandchildren, and 1 very, very special person, Megan Brown. She believed you can never make too many quilts, read enough books, and never have too many people to call you Grandma.
She was preceded in death by her husband Wilbert Knapp and her grandson James Clare. The family asks that in lieu of flowers, memorials can be sent to Ida United Methodist Church or the Monroe County Library System.
Visitation will be on Monday, September 14, 2020 from 11:00-2:00pm with the funeral service beginning at 2:00pm at Rupp Funeral Home, 2345 South Custer Rd, Monroe MI 48161 with Pastor Robert Freysinger officiating, and burial to follow at Roselawn Memorial Park.
Online condolences to the family may be made through www.ruppfuneralhomeinc.com.
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