Bill was born in Winter Haven, FL in 1941 to Charles Roswell Knight and Beatrice Keller. Both the Keller and Knight families migrated from Michigan to Dunedin, FL in the 1920s. In 1955, the Knight family moved to Orlando where Bill attended Howard Junior High and Boone High School. Upon graduation, Bill attended the University of Florida to attain a degree in Industrial Engineering. Bill also served in the Army Reserve.
In July 1966, in Orlando, FL, Bill met his future wife Joy May (a native of Chipley FL). After a short engagement, Bill and Joy married on April 23rd, 1967. Thanks to his career, Joy and Bill lived all over the United States – from Endicott NY to Santa Clara, CA to Tampa, FL ending up back in Orlando, FL.
Bill and Joy welcomed their daughter Jenny to their family in 1971 and their son Pearson in 1973. Bill was a thoughtful and caring father, who supported his family’s hobbies and interests – whether it was turtles or skateboards. His driving force was making things right for others. Bill and Joy welcomed their son Neal in 1985 while Joy was attending grad school for School Psychology at UCF.
Bill was a lifelong IBMer. Bill joined IBM when computers were the size of a bedroom and managed via punch cards. In 1988, Bill received the IBM Means Service Reward, a testament to his dedication to his customers and coworkers. Bill retired from IBM in 1997 after a 30-year career helping customers from the likes of Stanford to the State of Florida. After retiring from IBM, Bill went on to work for Star Systems and Concord EFS.
Bill retired again in 2009 in order to take on another job – being a grandfather to his grandson Harrison. In 2018, Bill and Joy moved to Asheville, NC to be near their son Neal, their daughter-in-law Jen and their granddaughters Zora and Sylvia.
Bill was driven with purpose to make the load lighter for others. He loved his children and adored his wife. He is survived by his wife Joy, his daughter Jenny, his sons -Pearson, and Neal.
Funeral Services will be held Thursday, June 8, 2023 at First United Methodist Church of Chipley. Visitation will begin at 9:30 A.M. with Funeral Service to follow at 10:30 A.M. Interment will be held at Glenwood Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to Mesulam Center for Cognitive Neurology and Alzheimer’s Disease or your local Hospice.
Brown Funeral Home & Blue Lake Crematory of Chipley, FL is in charge of arrangements. Family and friends may sign the online register at www.brownfh.net