Melvin William Knoyle
October 22, 1936 - January 2, 2018
Melvin William Knoyle, 81, of Salem, Oregon, passed away peacefully at Salem Hospital on January 2, 2018. Born on Thursday, October 22, 1936, in Butte, Montana to the joy of Melvin Randolph and Florence Matilda Knoyle (Headla), he is survived by his wife of 57 years, Diana, their two sons, Douglas and Timothy, and his brother James.
Mel graduated from Butte High School in 1954 where he was part of the Butte High School band. Receiving honors in percussion performance, he continued on with a music scholarship to the University of Montana, earning a Bachelor of Music degree. College is also where he met his wife to be, Diana Squires. They married in 1960 and relocated to Oregon a short time later.
Mel enjoyed a rewarding, varied, and challenging career path, including music educator as a band and chorus director, hi-fi and recording sales director (included speaker design), music store manager, business office machine sales and implementation, and finally, after gaining computer programming skills, as a bank examiner and database administrator for the State of Oregon.
Music played a central role throughout Mel’s life, as both Mel and Diana kept second careers – Mel, a highly active drummer, and Diana, a distinguished piano teacher.
Education in general was a prevalent theme. Mel delighted in teaching his kids and their friends about physics through lessons disguised as hobbies: model airplane design; construction and flight; industrial art; skateboard construction; skateboard ramp design and construction; homemade ice cream; hybrid power (generator+battery) bicycle lighting systems; and many other projects.
Mel and a friend founded a Control-Line model airplane club that included 38 kids plus their parents. They taught weekly night classes at Faye Wright Elementary School, with instruction covering model airplane construction, the science of flight, and the workings of internal combustion engines.
His generosity in sharing his gifts knew no bounds. He will be remembered for his enthusiasm, warmth, and gentleness.
For those interested, over the coming weeks further details will be made available at:
A memorial service followed by a reception will be held Saturday, January 27th, 1:00 p.m. at Our Savior's Lutheran Church, 1770 Baxter Rd. SE, Salem, OR 97306.
Memorial donations, in lieu of flowers, can be made to:
“Mel Knoyle Memorial - Our Savior's Lutheran Church”