ForeverMissed

This memorial website was created in the memory of our loved one, Russ Knerr born on October 21, 1953 and passed away on April 15, 2011. We will remember him forever. A Celebration of Russ Knerr’s life was held on May 14th, 2011 at the Solana Beach Presbyterian Church at 1:00 p.m.  Family and friends gathered to pay tribute  and honor the memories of a man who meant so much to all of us. The family kindly requests that should you choose to donate in Russ's honor,  direct donations to: 

San Diego Hospice and The Institute for Palliative Medicine
4311 Third Ave
San Diego, CA 92103
Donations to be made in honor of Russ Knerr

A Gift in Memory of Russ Knerr to:
The UCSD Foundation
Attn: Pam Werner, Director of Development
Moores UCSD Cancer Center
200 W. Arbor Drive, #8982
San Diego, CA 92103
Gifts to be "Designated for melanoma research"

Russ was a humble, honest and kind soul, caring father, loving spouse, worthy son and a giving friend. Russ imparted a special wisdom and a special brand of humor to all who listened. His view of life was always unique, inquisitive and positive. In our lives, few special people pass before us - one of those was Russ - who brought joy to to others and gave his all to his family and those of us who were lucky enough to be his friend.  

George Russell Knerr, III, age 57, of Del Mar, CA, passed away on April 15, 2011 after a 17-year battle with malignant melanoma.  Russ was surrounded by his loving family. He was born October 21, 1953 in St. Louis, MO, son of G. Russell Knerr, Jr. of Naples, FL, and Marilyn Martin Knerr, of Mechanicsburg, PA.  Russ attended Camp Hill High School and was a graduate of the Mercersburg Academy and Bucknell University.  He received his Masters degree from the American Graduate School of International Management in Glendale, AZ.  Russ was a wonderful husband, father, and grandfather, and loved by all who knew him.  He was a kind, humble, valiant and honorable man. He will be greatly missed by his family and friends.  He is survived by his parents, his wife Lynn, daughter Katy, granddaughter Charlie, his sister Virginia Mayfield and her son John Mayfield of Fort Worth, TX.

Please continue to share your memories, photos and tributes to Russ to preserve and honor his memory. 

 

 

Posted by Nancy Jamison on April 15, 2020
I am thinking about you today Lynn and the beautiful love that you and Russ shared that helped you gracefully and bravely navigate the long Road of cancer treatment you were on.  Inspirational. Sending Love to you and Katy.    Nancy
Posted by Laura Diede on April 15, 2020
Dear Russ,
I think of you almost everyday, as we always see always see at least one crow on our walk. I know Lynn, Katy and Charlie miss you terribly but know that they are doing well. You would have loved Katy's wedding, which went off without a hitch and right before the Coronavirus made the country close down. Lucky! Hope you and Mike and Bill are singing, playing golf, birding or whatever makes you all happy. Love you, Laurie
Posted by Andrea Berl on October 21, 2019
Happy Birthday Buddy! I miss you now and forever. This day I will carry a loving feeling around with me knowing that you were a loving friend to me, my husband and my family. You were a loving husband to Lynn and loving father to Katy and grandfather to Charlie. Thank you for sharing the love and light you had within with the world around you. You have inspired all of us that know you! Wish you were here.
Posted by Lynn Knerr on April 15, 2019
Eight years ago today you had to give up your battle to survive melanoma. I saw one of your dermatologists recently who reminded me of how much they all admired your strength and dry humor through the whole cancer journey. They told you that you had a one-year prognosis and you survived 17! You never really liked to be called the "Melanoma Warrior" (you were much too humble) but you sure were a survivor.
Just when I think I've gotten to a point where my sadness over losing you might be leveling out, something comes up and throws my life into turmoil and tears. A wonderful occasion - the marriage of our daughter Katy to her fiancee Lynel is happening in February 2020. While I am so happy about this, I am overwhelmed with sadness that you will not be here to walk our daughter down the aisle. It just doesn't seem right and it's difficult to cope with this pain. I know it was so hard for you to make it until Katy's 21st birthday, but you did it! I just wish you were going to be here to help me celebrate our daughter's wedding. I know this pain will pass and the event will be a joyous occasion, and you will be somewhere looking on. But I wish you were going to be here with us...
I look back at the tributes left on this site for you over the years and am again so grateful: for the time I got to spend with you; for our wonderful daughter; that you got to meet your granddaughter Charlie even if briefly; and for all the great memories. It seems to me that you had a profound effect on so many lives; I know that I am a better person because of you. Even now, so many years later, you are greatly missed and forever admired.
Love you dear Russ!
Posted by Bill Starbuck on October 22, 2018
The time passes Russ and though your at that the magic age of 65 you'll live on as a current memory of your wonderful recall, and wit...always that sparkle in your eye when you'd used one of your witty quips...you were a joy
Posted by Lynn Knerr on October 21, 2018
Happy 65th Birthday to my dear Russ. We miss you so much. I wish you were here to share everything with you. Life just isn't the same. You added such joy to our lives.
Posted by Robert Simkavitz on June 1, 2018
I worked with Russ in downtown San Francisco and the Bay Area in 1982 to 1984. Never forgot how full of life he was and his uncanny ability to remember people. His sense of humor was unstoppable.
Here in 2018 from Colorado I wish to thank you Russ for all the time we spent together on the job— funny, full of life and remembered fondly by every person he met. He made a difference in how I approached people and changed my life.
God Bless Russ.
Posted by Lynn Knerr on April 15, 2018
My dear Russ you have been gone 7 years. It is so hard to believe that it has been this long. We miss you every day but especially today. The memories come flooding in. Losing you in my life has been so difficult. If it weren't for your wonderful daughter and granddaughter I'm not sure I would have made it. They remind me of you every time I see them and it makes me smile. Katy said that Charlie is starting to have your sense of humor. I think it's true! You would be proud of them. I know I am. It might sound goofy but I see your life spirit carried on through them. It's how I know you are still with me. I love you and miss you so much.
Posted by David Dugan on April 15, 2018
Dear Russ,

I feel your Spirit. You live because you loved and are loved --even to this very moment. How can we not love such a beautiful soul such as yours. You are a light--keep burning bright. It helps us all as we journey to join you again in peace.
Posted by Bill Starbuck on October 21, 2017
Russ...Happy birthday big guy...the years tick by but the wonderful memories of you and Lynn; T-Bird, Mexico, and your visits to Palo Alto are crystal clear...I'm blessed to have known you both...
Posted by Lynn Knerr on October 21, 2017
Happy 64th Birthday. I'm missing you tremendously my sweet Russ. Every day that goes by I think it will be better. You were so dear to my heart that I still can't believe you are gone, and yet the emptiness in my heart confirms it every day. It's so unfair that you're not here to see your daughter and granddaughter grow up. They keep me going! Just know that you were, and always will be, cherished and loved. P.S. Charlie wants to have a birthday party for you tonight...she loves you and cake!!
Posted by Laura Diede on October 21, 2017
Today you would have been 64. You're missed constantly by so many. Your daughter has grown into an amazing young woman and her boyfriend Lynel is awesome. Your granddaughter Charlie is so beautiful and tall and Judith is just a previous young woman. Loopy, well, she's taking care of Mom now, who at 93 is still a kick. You're niece and nephews are awesome; Judith and Charlie loves playing with Lulus two boys, Holden and Avett. You probably know all this because we all constantly see crows- so we know you are watching us.
We miss you so much and wish you were still here. Love, Laurie
Posted by Bill Starbuck on April 17, 2017
Russ,
Your missed on this mortal plane my friend, but never far from our hearts...many wonderful memories...
Posted by Lynn Knerr on April 16, 2017
We toasted Russ last night, six years after we lost him. We miss him and think about him all the time. Russ, your granddaughter Charlie asked me yesterday morning if your body is still here in the house. I told her that your spirit definitely is here. Judith remembers that you used to call out "Good night Barbie" and she would reply "Goodnight Ken". She was about six or seven, and it is a sweet memory for her even now as she is almost fifteen! We have so many reminders of you. I am honored to have been your wife and I still miss you dearly. Love, Lynn
Posted by Valerie Casey on April 15, 2017
We continue to cherish our memories of Russ and send our love to the Knerr family.
Posted by Andrea Berl on October 21, 2016
Respect and Love is going out to you and your family. I miss your gentle nature.
Posted by Roger Knupp on April 16, 2016
Hey Russ, You were a great friend throughout high school and college. We had some crazy fun times, Mercersburg, Camp Hill, and Houston. Miss your crazy fun laugh!! Peace my friend!!
Posted by Mel Ingalls on April 16, 2016
No matter how busy I am, I remember and miss Russ.
Posted by Lynn Knerr on April 15, 2016
I come back to this website regularly to re-read all of the wonderful notes and stories about Russ and to look at the photos. What an amazing guy he was! I miss him all the time, but especially today on the five-year anniversary of his passing. I feel his presence in our home and around me, with constant reminders of him - like his beautiful daughter and the granddaughter he only got to know briefly, but happily. The deep sorrow I feel is overwhelming today, and many days, but he left us with such a grand legacy of memories to support us through the years. I truly loved that man and I always will! I think of him and smile.
Posted by Marilyn Knerr on October 22, 2015
Not a day goes by that I don't have Russ in my thoughts and prayers. I love him and miss him so much.
Posted by Bill Starbuck on October 21, 2015
Russ...it's a great loss to not have you in our lives dear friend...you were an absolutely unique, special person, and if I sit quietly I can still hear your laugh..not of this mortal plane but part of our hearts...
Posted by Lynn Knerr on April 17, 2015
To my dear Russ,
The day has come and gone to honor your life and our loss of you - four years ago yesterday. I hope you know that we honor your life every day, not just on the day of your passing. I spent yesterday in a hospital, helping Mom but thinking of you. I learned so much from you - somehow it made being in the hospital almost bearable. We spent way too much time in hospitals, didn't we? Yet, all the times there and in between were amazingly special and I hold all of our memories so close to my heart. I miss you tremendously. I wish I could just hear your voice again or see your smile. Even though it has been four long years, I keep thinking you'll walk around the corner and back into our lives. You meant so much to me and to so many people. I love you very, very much.
P.S. I'm sure you're up in heaven playing with Carol Starbuck's boxer, Frasier. You always had a special bond with humans *and* animals! :)
Posted by Bill Starbuck on April 17, 2015
Wonderful memories Russ..."Hey get off that T-bird pinball game and study your Spanish!"
Posted by David Dugan on April 15, 2015
Today I celebrate you, Russ, a life giving spirit full of light and love. You inspire.
Posted by Carol Starbuck on April 15, 2015
I miss you Russ and I think of you often. Two months ago today 2/15/15 my Boxer doggie Frazier died. I have a favor to ask, would you be so kind as to watch over him in heaven for me until I meet up with you there. Miss you dear friend****
Posted by Laura Diede on April 15, 2015
So hard to believe you've been gone so long. I'm reminded of you everyday by the crowd in our neighborhood. We talk about you often, and smile. You are deeply missed.
Posted by Lynn Knerr on October 21, 2014
Dear Russ, I miss you. Today would have been your 61st birthday. It seems so unfair not to have you here with us to celebrate a life well lived. I think about you all the time. I am forever grateful for the life we had together. Love you forever, Lynn
Posted by Carol Starbuck on October 21, 2014
Happy birthday RUSS. I can still remember the night at a Mexican resturant in Palo Alto you turned to me and said "The waiters name is Otto"...I looked at you kinda like " ahhh OK"... And with that wonderful wit you said "yes, Automatic". I bursted out laughing. I still do to this day when I think of that! The light stilll shines dear friend. Always.
Posted by Bill Starbuck on October 21, 2014
No one with a better memory, or wit...Happy Birthday Russ and thank you for being part of so many of my most valued personal experiences.
Posted by Andrea Berl on April 15, 2014
I miss and love you!
Posted by Lynn Knerr on April 15, 2014
Dear Russ,
You have been gone from us for three years now. We miss you very much. And you have missed so much. Our lovely, kind daughter Katy just turned 24 on April 9th. And our granddaughter Charlie will be 4 on May 6th. I'm so glad you got to meet her. She told me yesterday that you are her favorite Pop-Pop and you are in the sky watching over us. :)
We struggle on without you. I cherish all of the wonderful memories I have with you and although my heart is broken, I smile when I think of you. You could always make me laugh.
Love you and miss you so much,
Lynn
Posted by Bill Starbuck on April 15, 2014
Russ..you and Lynn will always be remembered during a wonderful time in life...your not gone, just waiting around the corner...
Posted by Mel Ingalls on October 23, 2013
I remember what Russ, Lynn and I did related to melanoma.
Posted by Lynn Knerr on October 21, 2013
My dear Russ would have been 60 today, the 21st of October. If he were still here, we would have a huge celebration (which he would have said wasn't needed but would have throughly enjoyed!). But since he isn't here, we will remember him in solemn quiet, our hearts filled with love for him, wishing he were still here with us, tears in our eyes. Miss him so much!
Posted by Carol Starbuck on October 21, 2013
Happy Birthday today Russ. I know you are with us in spirit so we shall remember always. Love you, Carolina
Posted by Bill Starbuck on October 21, 2013
Happy birthday warrior man...Russ,a brave soul who left a wonderful legacy of strength and kindness to all who knew him....your missed
Posted by John Moran on October 21, 2013
Russ you are loved and missed! Hoya Hoya!
John and Gail
Posted by Bill Starbuck on April 18, 2013
The T-Bird pub, Russ on the pin ball, Reggae playing, cold beer, and our futures before us all... a magical time
Posted by Carol Starbuck on April 15, 2013
Two years always loved, never forgotten! Thought about you last night when I was watching a movie and I saw a character who reminded me of you. He was a cool guy just like you.....Always loved, never forgotten!
Posted by Lynn Knerr on April 15, 2013
Dearest Russ, Two long years of missing you. Seems like it should get easier but it just hasn't. I miss you every day and think about you all the time. Thank you for all the time we had together and the memories we created. You would be so proud of our daughter; how she is living her life & raising Charlie. She is so much like you it makes me smile. I'll love you forever and always.
Posted by Laura Diede on April 15, 2013
It has been two years since you flew away. (I think that's what Charlie thinks, because she always says every crow or black bird she sees is you). The funny thing is, it's like you are still here all the time. Being able to live here with Lynn, Katy, Charlie, Judith, Hugo and Nana has been very special. You have left behind a beautiful family...
Posted by Helen Tuliback on April 15, 2013
What smiles you still leave behind,, Miss you!
Posted by Marilyn Knerr on October 24, 2012
Dear Russ, I miss you so much and have so memories of the wonderful times we had together. I wish were with us this Christmas to see your adorable granddaughter open her gifts. I know somehow you will be. Love you, Mom
Posted by Mel Ingalls on October 22, 2012
Russ and I had watery eyes when we talked about hospice during the melanoma group. It was a goodbye. Previously, we discussed life and increasing well-being then about an ending. I was touched . Now I am  sad and OK with missing Russ.
Posted by Laura Diede on October 21, 2012
To the Melanoma Warrior. It's the day of your birth and you are greatly missed but we all talk about you all the time and hold your life up as a goal for all! Love you always! Laurie
Posted by Helen Tuliback on October 21, 2012
Your always in my thoughts. Love seeing your family, and sharing all the memories.
You would be so proud of them, with raising Charlie, you live within that little one...xo, with love your friend, and stylist. :)
Posted by Carol Starbuck on April 15, 2012
Hi Russ, We are all thinking about you today and my wish is that you are there with us in every ray of sunshine, in every breath we take. In every star that twinkles I look for you everywhere. Until we meet again dear friend, know you are in our hearts forever. AKA Las Madres de la Comunida...A Knerr/Starbuck Joke!! Right Lynn :-)
Posted by Lynn Knerr on April 15, 2012
Dear Russ, what a long and lonely year of missing you this has been. I have always loved you and I always will. I am the luckiest person in the world to have had you for my husband and my one true love. Today we will commemorate you with memories and thoughts from family and friends. It will be sad but joyful, for we all treasure the time we had with you. I love you dearly, Lynn
Posted by Lynn Knerr on December 19, 2011
Dear sweet Russ, It is a few days past eight months since you had to leave us. We miss you so much every day, but especially as Christmas approaches. It will never be the same and yet the special traditions we created together will sustain us through the holidays. I wish you were here to see Charlie open her Christmas presents. She says hi to your picture every day. I love you, Lynn
Posted by Ryan Barry on November 19, 2011
Love you Russ
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Recent Tributes
Posted by Nancy Jamison on April 15, 2020
I am thinking about you today Lynn and the beautiful love that you and Russ shared that helped you gracefully and bravely navigate the long Road of cancer treatment you were on.  Inspirational. Sending Love to you and Katy.    Nancy
Posted by Laura Diede on April 15, 2020
Dear Russ,
I think of you almost everyday, as we always see always see at least one crow on our walk. I know Lynn, Katy and Charlie miss you terribly but know that they are doing well. You would have loved Katy's wedding, which went off without a hitch and right before the Coronavirus made the country close down. Lucky! Hope you and Mike and Bill are singing, playing golf, birding or whatever makes you all happy. Love you, Laurie
Posted by Andrea Berl on October 21, 2019
Happy Birthday Buddy! I miss you now and forever. This day I will carry a loving feeling around with me knowing that you were a loving friend to me, my husband and my family. You were a loving husband to Lynn and loving father to Katy and grandfather to Charlie. Thank you for sharing the love and light you had within with the world around you. You have inspired all of us that know you! Wish you were here.
Recent stories

One Year of Missing Russ

Shared by Lynn Knerr on April 15, 2012

A year ago today... seems so long and yet so recent.

Everyday we find ourselves wishing he was here to tell us one of his silly jokes; explain about something no one else seems to know except him; to ask for technical assistance on our darn computers or the password to something; to see his wonderful smile or raised eyebrow; to hear him play guitar with Katy and sing us a song; to watch him wiz through crossword puzzles; to watch Regis and Kelly in the morning over a lovely cup of coffee; to work on projects around the house or in our garden;  to watch him be silly with his granddaughters; or to just sit quietly and enjoy his calm, loving presence. We have these and so many other memories to give us strength in the days, months, and years to come. We see his touch in everything and his smile all day long. And really, there is a certain crow that seems to show up at the most unusual moments….

An old friend. . .

Shared by Susan Yost-Filgate on September 25, 2011

I just learned about Russ’ passing on FaceBook. We had become “friends” again in recent years. I have known Russ—or rather Rusty, as he was called back then – since the 4th grade when he moved to Camp Hill. I remember him and his family from both school and the country club, which our families both frequented.

 

Rusty was always very different from most of the other boys – he was much more mature and got over the “girls as cooties” thing much earlier. He actually was one of the first boys to have a girlfriend—a very pretty girl named Vicki Ryder. I think that may have been short-lived. But he was always popular and sought after by girls for his good looks and charm—even then. For some reason, I valued his friendship and never saw him as “boyfriend” material. He was just fun to be around and great to talk to about anything.

 

I particularly remember 6th grade— in Mr. Berner’s class. It was the year after John Kennedy was shot. The space thing was big. There was a group of boys who built “rocket ships” which they raced around the town of Camp Hill on Saturdays. Each week was a different launch – and always, only boys were allowed to be the “pilots”. They really didn’t want girls involved, but Rusty was always pretty cool and kind to the excluded girls – at least he was to me and made me feel somehow better. I remember hanging out at each others houses and talking about the world – as much as 12 year olds could.

 

We knew each other through junior/senior high school (in Camp Hill, the school was 7th to 12th grade) and we hung out with many of the same kids. As we got older, we became the hippie group, the ones that protested Viet Nam and had sit-ins to allow us to wear pants (for girls) and then to wear blue jeans. But I remember Rusty went away to a private school. I remember missing him being at school. I think I saw him again when we were seniors when I was making plans with some of those “rocket ship boys” to get a VW bus and travel around the US after graduation and out to California. I think Rusty may have even been a part of that plan. That never happened. We all went off to college.

 

We lost touch. I often wondered what happened to him over the years. I had looked for him on occasion, wanting to just say hello to an old friend again.

 

It is interesting that our lives must have paralleled on occasion. After graduating from Penn State, I went on to San Francisco where I met my husband in 1977—around the time Russ met Lynn, it seems. We married in San Francisco in 1979 and lived there for most of 22 years, then moved on to Carmel for seven years, and then Fresno. We both have one daughter, ours was born a few year’s earlier, in 1984 (no grandchildren as yet). I wish our paths had crossed again. It would have been fun to meet up and get to know each other’s spouses and children.

 

A few years ago, I found Rusty on FaceBook and discovered that he was also a Californian. We had a brief “conversation”. I had no idea he was ill. He was very brave. I wish his family nothing but the best—I know how lucky they are to have had such a fabulous spirit in their lives. Even though we hadn't seen each other in nearly 40 years, I will miss him too. He was a special part of my growing-up-years.

Celebration of Russ's Life - Tribute at Solana Beach Church May 14, 2011

Shared by Amaury Gallisa on May 15, 2011

Russ and I first met in 1977 at Thunderbird - over 32 years ago.  Lynn and Russ were an “item” even then. We were like the 3 musketeers back then on campus and later living together in Mexico together.  I had the honor to be best man for Russ & Lynn's wedding. Even then, when you think of soul mates or those folks fated to be together- I always thought of Russ and Lynn.  And I know Russ thought how lucky he has been to have Lynn as his wife, partner and best friend. He always thought he got the better part of that deal.
 
We remained friends after graduation, with Russ in Rochester and later in their first CA apartment in Menlo Park and later in Cupertino and San Diego. There are casual friends and there are deep, abiding friendships that mean everything in one's life. Russ was one of the latter - the kind that make all the difference in the world. Russ got me my first tech job by going to his boss and vouching for me. That simple act of faith from Russ led to my career in technology and to my relocation to California. I owe much of my success to Russ as a friend and mentor because Russ  was always there to help someone else out.  And that was just Russ, he always made the other person feel more special than himself. Which just made Russ himself more special.
 
Russ was a tremendous teacher on the value of being a good human being - it was a rare moment when Russ said a negative thing. For him the glass was always full. Even in fighting his disease, Russ always spoke of it as an inconvenience or something that had to be overcome. And for Russ, it was also about love his family, for the apple of his eye, Katie, and then for Charlie that gave him the will to push back on his disease. Few men have to overcome and fight so much to be with his loved ones – Russ did that for 15 years,since he was diagnosed in 1996. Russ set goals to be there for Katy and later on for Charlie – all out of love. Just remember Russ's Mohawk haircut, that he did with and for Katy – to get a sense of both his ability to laugh at himself and his love for Katy.
 
I'll always remember Russ for his sense of adventure, abiding curiosity, quirky sense of humor and ability to be passionate about so many things. He loved the unique nature of life - his collection of Mexican dog statues, cool old movies like “The Good the Bad and the Ugly” and interesting music like George Thorogood "Bad to the Bone”,Tom Waits and his favorite “More than a Feeling” by Boston, technology like his red Audi Quattro and the endless electronic gadgets --- Russ always made it interesting. One thing for sure, you would never be bored around Russ.
 
In the end, I'll remember him for his perseverance. Most of us get upset because we lose our keys or our cell phones. Russ stayed positive while they were taking parts of his body and living in pain. Russ was strong and wise like a 100 year old  oak tree that has survived many storms. Russ never mentioned how bad things were for him  - I only got the inkling of it from Lynn and from the times we tried to get together where he just could not.
 
Let me share one last memory of Russ.  I was coming to visit him in mid April when Lynn called me in Mexico City to tell me that Russ was near the end of his time with us. I spoke to Russ via phone from Mexico - russ could  speak in a whisper I told him of memories like driving with him in intense Mexico City traffic in the 70’s, his passion for Latin America, of life with him while sharing a house in Guadalajara together, and driving back to Thunderbird from Mexico with Russ when we lost our map in the middle of the countryside.  I told him that his friendship has been and always will be special to me as it is for us who gathered here today to celebrate his life.
Russ  will live on in our hearts and never be forgotten. Russ  is out there now smiling down on us with his russ smile and making others feel special through his memory.