Mr. Harold Mason Knapp, age 96, died Thursday, April 20, 2023 at Berkshire Medical Center surrounded by loving family following a period of recent decline.
Harold was born in Cortland, NY on May 13, 1926 the only son of the late Harold and Kenneith (Pratt) Knapp. He was raised in Springfield , MA and joined the US Navy during WWII on May 19, 1943 at only 17 years old. Harold was proud of his military service and often spoke of his time on the submarines. He was honorably discharged on May 4, 1946 with the rank of Electricians Mate, Third Class. He served on the USS Cobia, also known as the SS245, and earned the World War II Victory Medal, the American Theatre Medal, the Asiatic-Pacific Medal, and the S/M Combat insignia 1.
Harold married the former Maureen Fradet at St. Michael’s Cathedral in Springfield, MA on May 2, 1951. They celebrated 65 beautiful years of marriage together before her passing on November 6, 2016. Harold truly adored his wife and was heartbroken after her passing.
Following his honorable discharge from the Navy, he earned his GED and started college under the GI Bill at University of Vermont, where he also played hockey. He later earned his Bachelors of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from Western New England and worked for GE in Holyoke until 1962. He and his family moved as his career advanced and they lived in Ohio, North Carolina and Pittsfield. Harold retired in the late 1980s after 30 years of service, and was then hired back as a consultant until he was in his mid-80s. He was one of the only local electrical engineers remaining who had specific knowledge of power reactor design.
Mr. Knapp enjoyed golden age musicals and was part of the book club and many other activities at the Senior Center. He was a man of great faith and was a lector at St. Mary’s church until their closure, after which he joined Sacred Heart.
He loved golf and had been an active member of the GEAA since the 70s. He also enjoyed many trips to Florida and Cape Cod.
Above all else, Harold was a family man. He was kind, generous and thoughtful, and anyone who met him shared in an instant connection and friendship. Up until Maureen’s passing, the two would open their home every Wednesday night for family pizza night. Their children, grandchildren and later great grandchildren all remember those Wednesday nights fondly.
Harold is survived by three children, Joseph Knapp (Sarah Pines) of Columbus, OH, Kathleen Huska (Steven) and Thomas Knapp, and his son-in-law Dave Harte, all of Pittsfield. He leaves 8 beloved grandchildren, David and Julie Harte, Jackie Zuccalo (Brian), Jeff Harte (Briana), Sean Harte, Catherine Squires (Jason), Kimberly Koldys (Sean), and Luke Huska (Chantelle), and 15 great grandchildren, Jake, Troy, Jonny, Stevie, Mia, Cal, Jason, Kacie, Levi, Khloe, Maria, Kylie, Elliot, Savannah, and Dallas. Additionally, Harold is survived by his sister Judy Boyce and several nieces and nephews.
In addition to his wife, Maureen, Harold was predeceased by his beloved, first born daughter Sherry Harte on May 16, 2018. Although their passing greatly impacted his final years, his family takes comfort in knowing that they are now reunited. He was also predeceased by an infant daughter, Susie Knapp, and two sisters, Honey Savoit and her husband Bob and Suzanne Knapp.
SERVICES: Visitation at the DEVANNY-CONDRON FUNERAL HOME will be WEDNESDAY, April 26, 2023 from 9-10:30 AM. A Liturgy of Christian Burial will be celebrated at Sacred Heart Church at 11AMwith Rev. Steven Montesanti, Pastor, officiating. Inurnment will follow at St. Joseph’s Cemetery with Military Honors.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made payable to “Ralph J. Froio Senior Center” and mailed to the funeral home at 40 Maplewood Ave. Pittsfield, MA 01201