Robert Wayne "Bob" Knish, age 63 of Waseca, died on Tuesday, December 19, 2017 at Mayo Clinic Health System in Waseca.
Born August 16, 1954 in Faribault, MN to Raymond and Doris (Clemons) Knish, Bob was the third of three children. He grew up in Waterville, where his father owned and operated a service station on Main Street and his mother was a lead administrator for Fahning's Homes. Bob graduated from Waterville-Elysian High School in 1973.
Bob spent most of his working years as a skilled finish carpenter in the greater Waterville area, and from 2003 to 2012 in Pueblo, Colorado. After returning to Waterville, he retired from carpentry due to injuries associated with the construction trades, and he worked for a time selling guns at Cabela's in Owatonna.
He was expert in all things related to firearms, and reloaded all of his own ammunition. He was an avid hunter, particularly pheasant hunting, and became an accomplished bird dog trainer. Bob owned and rode Harley motorcycles throughout his life, and riding was a passion that occupied much of his summer of 2017.
Bob was a caring and dedicated father. He was a calm and patient parent, yet with high expectations. By his example, he instilled a sense of independence, hard work, and the pride of finishing undertakings well, with no shortcuts or corner cutting. He emphasized doing what was right, rather than what might be popular. He also passed along a deep love of nature and music to his children.
He learned to play electric guitar later in life. Sometimes Bob called his daughter, Melissa, on the phone and played for her the new songs he was learning. He had the opportunity to live with his son, Jeremy, after returning from Colorado. It was a time for shared interests in music, firearms, motorcycles, dogs, and outdoor activities.
In almost storybook fashion, several years ago, Bob decided he would try to find the girlfriend he had almost 30 years ago. He and Shauna Evans of New Ulm were soon dating and became deeply integral to each other's lives and future dreams.
Bob was blessed with the ability to quickly connect with people of any background and was loved by all who knew him. He was known for his gentle kindness and quick sense of humor. He enjoyed a broad and deep connection to the Waterville community, with ancestors dating back to the early pioneers of the region.
Bob is survived by his wife, Shauna Evans; two children, Jeremy Knish and his wife Caya Dahl of Waterville, and Melissa Carrasco and her husband Juan of Owatonna; five grandchildren; and two siblings William "Bill" Knish and his wife Linda of Waseca, and Kathryn Taylor of Sartell. He was preceded in death by both of his parents; and one brother-in-law, Dean Taylor.
Bob held a strong interest and respect for Native American culture. He asked that his ashes be carried to a spiritual sanctuary in Western South Dakota, where his long-time friend, Dean Yellowhawk, will perform a private traditional ceremony in 2018.
An informal memorial service will be held at 6:00PM on Wednesday, December 27, 2017 at Dennis Funeral & Cremation Services in Waterville. Visitation will be held from 4:00PM until the time of the service at the funeral home. dennisfuneralhomes.com
Published on December 22, 2017