Robert Arthur Knauff

Air Mentor, leader, visionary, friend, a good and righteous man – words his friends and colleagues used to remember a man who was special to many people from many walks of life.

Major General Robert A. Knauff, USAF (Ret), 61, of Cazenovia, N.Y. died on May 3, 2014 in a glider crash in Aguila, Ariz.

He was born Feb. 3, 1953 in Pasadena, Calif. to George and Alice (McKee) Knauff. He graduated from Bernards High School in Bernardsville, N.J. in 1971 where he ran on the State Champion Cross Country team. He graduated from the U.S. Air Force Academy in 1975 with a Bachelor of Science in Aeronautical Engineering degree and completed undergraduate flight training in 1976. He later earned a Masters of Aeronautical Science from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. He also studied at Syracuse University, USAF Squadron Officer School, Air Command and Staff College, Air War College and in the NATO Tactical Leadership Program.

General Knauff served for nearly 34 years in the U. S. Air Force. He was a combat veteran with more than 3,900 flying hours in F-106 Delta Daggers, F-15 Eagle, F-16 Falcon and OV-10 observation aircraft.

He commanded the 174th Fighter Wing at Hancock Field from 1996 to 2003. In addition to his supervision of the F-16 organization, he was also the senior supervisor of an Air Operations Group, an Air Support Operations Squadron, and the host commander for the Eastern Air
Defense Sector. During his final assignment, Knauff commanded the 6,000-member New York Air National Guard and served as deputy commander of the 17,000 men and women of the New York Army and Air National Guard. In addition, he served from 2006 to 2008 as the Air National Guard Assistant to the Commander, Air Force Special Operations Command (AFSOC).

During his time with the New York Air National Guard, Knauff played a key role in the United States Antarctic Program (USAP) during a critical period of expansion. New York Air National Guard LC-130 flights were instrumental in the successful completion of the new South Pole station, which was dedicated in 2008. Upon his retirement from military service in February 2009 the National Science Foundation recognized Knauff for his contribution to Antarctic science by recommending that an Antarctic feature be named for him. Mount Knauff, a mountain that rises to over 1,000 meters (3,300 feet) on the Pennell Coast of Victoria Land, Antarctica, has been named in his honor.

After his retirement in 2009, General Knauff served as the former Chief Operating Officer for the Northeast UAS Airspace Integration Re- search Alliance, LLC (“NUAIR”) and was an independent consultant for aerospace and defense industries specializing in U.S. Forces and Air National Guard programs.

In addition to being a man who loved to fly, Bob, as he preferred to be called, had a wide range of interests. Two of his “prides and joys” were his perfectly restored 1927 Chandler and his 1952 Indian motorcycle. He loved history, especially the Revolutionary and Civil War, unusual antique cars and planes, motorcycle trips, and was working to perfect his wine-making skills.

General Knauff was predeceased by his parents and his beloved wives, Kathy Graham Knauff and Tara Howard Knauff. He is survived by his sister Christy Knauff Fitzpatrick and her husband, Leo, of Buena Vista, Colo. and Houlton, Maine; and 13 nieces and nephews who adored him.

Funeral services were held on May 19th at St. James Church in Cazenovia, N.Y. and General Knauff was buried with military honors in the Gerald B.H. Soloman Saratoga National Cemetery.

Christy K. Fitzpatrick, Bob’s sister, with input from the Division of Polar Programs, National Science Foundation

 


 

Major General Robert A. Knauff, USAF (ret.), 61, of Cazenovia died on Saturday, May 3rd in Aguila, AZ.

He was born February 3, 1953 in Pasadena, California to George and Alice (McKee) Knauff. He graduated from Bernards High School in Bernardsville, NJ in 1971 where he was a member of the State Champion Cross Country team. He graduated from the US Air Force Academy with a Bachelor of Science in Aeronautical Engineering degree and earned a Masters of Aeronautical Science from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. He also studied at Syracuse University, USAF Squadron Officer School, Air Command and Staff College, Air War College and in the NATO Tactical Leadership Program.

General Knauff served for nearly 34 years in the U. S. Air Force. His final assignment was as Commander, New York Air National Guard. He was also the Deputy Adjutant General for New York State. He served from 2006 to 2008 as the Air National Guard Assistant to the Commander, Air Force Special Operations Command (AFSOC).

Prior to his assignment as Commander, General Knauff was the Chief of Staff, New York Air National Guard. He supervised the Air Component personnel of Joint Force Headquarters, New York National Guard. Prior to his assignment as Chief of Staff General Knauff was the Commander of the 174th Fighter Wing, Syracuse, NY. In addition to his supervision of the F-16 organization, he was also the senior supervisor of an Air Operations Group, an Air Support Operations Squadron, and the host commander for the Eastern Air Defense Sector.

Before coming to the 174th General Knauff spent nearly ten years in the New Jersey Air National Guard. He served the first ten years of his career on active duty flying F-15s and OV-10s in a number of duty locations performing various pilot duties.

After his retirement in 2009, General Knauff served as the former Chief Operating Officer for the Northeast UAS Airspace Integration Research Alliance, LLC (“NUAIR”) was an independent consultant for aerospace and defense industries specializing in US Air Force and Air National Guard programs.

General Knauff was predeceased by his parents and his beloved wives Kathy Graham Knauff and Tara Howard Knauff. He is survived by his sister Christy Knauff Fitzpatrick and her husband Leo of Buena Vista, CO and Houlton, ME and 10 nieces and nephews who adored him.

Funeral services will be held at 3pm on Monday, May 19th at St. James Church, 6 Green Street in Cazenovia. Burial will be in the Gerald B.H. Soloman Saratoga National Cemetery at 12pm on Tuesday. Calling hours will be held Sunday, May 18th from 1-3 at Tait Funeral Home, Inc., 2333 Fenner Road in Cazenovia.

In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to:

Central New York SPCA; 5878 Molloy Rd; Syracuse, NY 13211 www.cnyspca.org (315) 454-4479

Old Rhinebeck Aerodrome Museum; PO Box 229; Rhinebeck, NY 12572 www.oldrhinebeck.com (845) 752-3200

Central New York Salvation Army; 677 S. Salina St; Syracuse, NY 13202 (315) 475-1688

Condolences may be sent to his sister, Christy:

Mrs. Christy Fitzpatrick; 369 B Road; Houlton, ME 04730

Tait Funeral Home  |  May 10, 2014

 

Flickr Album of Bob's Funeral

Photos

   
   
Remembrances

A beautiful, honest, full-of-life brother. He lived life to the fullest and there are many who are thankful he did. I am one. God Bless him.

Duane Jones

Gerald B.H. Solomon Saratoga National Cemetery


GBNF