George H. Knell
September 13, 1930 ‒ March 02, 2017
MANSFIELD: George Knell’s positive attitude led to positive outcomes. His hardworking, upbeat and generous personality traits fashioned him into an amazing role model. Never flashy, but with a quick wit (and a little bit of sass) he lovingly put others’ needs before his own.
George’s smile is left to memory as he passed into the Lord’s care Thursday afternoon March 2, 2017 at OhioHealth Mansfield Hospital. He was 86.
Born September 13, 1930 in Mansfield to parents Arch and Mary (Freehafer) Knell, he was graduated from Bellville High School in 1948. While studying at The Ohio State University, he enlisted to serve with the US Army during the Korean War, and after his discharge, he returned to OSU to doggedly pursue his dream of becoming an attorney – and making a difference in his world. He earned his Bachelors of Business Administration degree and his JD, law degree from OSU.
After one year with a Mansfield law firm, George opened his own practice in the Richland Bank building – a firm that would bear his name more than 40 years. George took in partners through the years, and the practice grew: the name Knell was synonymous with sagacious legal counsel in Mansfield.
George formerly served as assistant solicitor for the City of Mansfield, and village solicitor to both Bellville and Lucas. His interest in youth led him to serve on the Clear Fork School Board and he helped establish, as attorney adviser, the Mock Trial program at Madison High School.
He was a member of the American Bar Association, Richland County Bar Association (past president), American Legion Post #535, Mansfield Grotto, Masonic Lodge #35, and Bellville Presbyterian Church, where he formerly served as a deacon and on session. George was a life member of Bellville-Jefferson Township Historical Society.
He leaves a legacy to his family as a man who valued them, believed in them, and invested in them. His compassionate support – putting them first – always – instilled unconditional love and worth.
He is survived by his wife Betty (Waggoner) Knell, whom he married December 19, 1954; their children Michael (Beverly) Knell of Mansfield and Lori (Thomas) Hoyt of Mansfield; grandchildren Ryan Knell, Tyler (Tiffany) Knell, Dustin Knell, Kristy (Josh) Ramey, Courtney (Tyler) Barwick, and Andrew Hoyt; step grandchildren Stephenie Beal and Kristine Beal; great grandchildren Grace Knell, Payton Hoyt—Barwick, and Riley Barwick; step great grandson Landon Beal; and a niece Sharon See of Mansfield.
He was preceded in death by a sister Margery Francola.
The Knell family will receive friends Monday, March 6, 2017 from 3 to 7 p.m. in the Bellville Snyder Funeral Home, where his funeral service will be held Tuesday at 11 a.m. Celebrant Dave Roberts will officiate. Burial will follow in Bellville Cemetery where American Legion Post #535 will hold graveside military honors.
Contributions in George’s memory to either Bellville-Jefferson Township Historical Society or Bellville Presbyterian Church may be made at the funeral home.
Snyder Funeral Home is honored to serve the Knell family. Send them a message of sympathy – or watch George’s tribute video – online at: SnyderFuneralHomes.com
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