Mr. James A. Knowles, also known as Jim, Mr. Jim, Pee Wee, Jimmy and Sonny, and since he served as a football official, he was also called a number of other names which modesty prevents me from listing here, passed away on Wednesday, October 21, 2020.
He is survived by his daughter Mrs. Belinda Price and son-in-law Richard Price. He has seven grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren; step children Ricky Taylor, Kenny Taylor and Vickie Easley. He is also survived by LeeAnn, his four-legged child.
Mr. Knowles was retired in 1982 from the Mississippi Air National Guard having served 33 years and eight months in military service. Upon retirement, he was hired to be the first Executive Director of the Mississippi National Guard Non-Commissioned Officers Association. He is also responsible for organizing the Football Officials for the Private Academies in the local area. Along with Neil Rosenbaum, as the referee, and the Collins brothers, as the umpire and field judge, Mr. Knowles as head linesman, they comprised the first officials of this association.
Mr. Knowles was also an avid golfer and enjoyed playing as long as he could see and ride the course. In 2010, he ceased to enjoy playing golf and gave up the sport. In his younger years, he was a pitcher for the fast pitch softball league at Highland Park. In his later years, he enjoyed shooting snooker with the guys at the Meridian Activity Center. He also called Bingo and told jokes to the “Old Folks” at the Center as well. He believed laughter was a good pain killer for most everybody.
Mr. Knowles is a life member of the Enlisted Association of America, headquartered in Alexandria, Virginia. This is an organization in which he served as Vice President in 1974. He is also a life member of the Mississippi National Guard NCO Association and served as President for two years in 1974. He is a member of the American Legion since he retired in 1982.
His funeral will be held Monday, October 26, 2020 at 12 noon at Stephens Funeral Home, 2800 Old North Hills Street, Meridian, MS. Visitation will be one hour prior to the funeral at the Stephens Chapel. Interment will be at the Mississippi Veterans Memorial Cemetery, 248 Honor Circle, Newton, MS 39345.
He requests no flowers and that donations be sent to the Community Seventh-day Adventist Church School.
Friends may sign the online register at www.stephensfunerals.com.