George James "Jim" Knoupf III

george knoupf

August 24, 1945 ~ August 31, 2021

Born in: Asheville, NC
Resided in: Asheville, NC

George James (Jim) Knoupf III, 76, of Asheville, died Tuesday, Aug. 31, 2021 at Wake Forest Baptist Comprehensive Cancer Center.

Jim always called himself one of the “Biltmore boys” and was a lifelong Asheville native. He distinguished himself as a member of the first graduating class of T.C. Roberson High School, UNCA graduate and proud member of the Huns, and he retired with over 28 years of service from the Asheville Fire Department. Jim was preceded in death by his parents, Jeanne and George James Knoupf Jr. and his first-born son, George James (Jimmy) Knoupf IV.

Jim taught us that family “didn’t have to be blood”. He is survived by his beloved wife, Kelli Knoupf; their blended family of five children, Joshua Pressley and his wife Elisabeth, Amanda Pressley, Kody LaRowe, Carmen Bradley and her husband Tim and Kory Knoupf, as well as four grandchildren, Hannah LaRowe, Brennan Pressley, John Pressley and Georgia Pressley.

As an only child, Jim was known for his outgoing personality and cherished many life-long friendships. He would strike up a conversation with anyone who would listen and made friends everywhere he went. His love for travel was never more present than in our annual trips to Destin, FL, which is where we will remember him most. Coffee on the balcony, overlooking emerald green waters, a set of binoculars never far from reach. He’d always look off at the skyline and say, “this is what makes it all worth it right here”.

Jim’s gentle, yet stern nature made him an exceptional father. He enjoyed imparting life lessons on his children and grandchildren. He was always a penny-pincher and tried to impart on us the importance of doing “your have-to’s versus your want-to’s”. In fact, he would probably roll his eyes at such a lengthy obituary, calling into question if it was really necessary.

Jim loved music and dancing; much to our embarrassment, he and Mom were always the first on the dance floor. He had a competitive nature and loved all sports, but especially golf and NASCAR. The rule at 215 Myrtle was always “don’t talk to me if the race is on” and we knew Mom was going to Target if any important golf was scheduled.

He loved life, and lived it HIS way on HIS own terms. Jim’s gruff exterior didn’t fool those who knew him well. He was a very kind hearted man who cared deeply about others’ problems. He adored his wife, loved his kids, and cherished his cats. He chose to see the world through “rose colored glasses” and enjoyed sharing that view with those lucky enough to have known him.

The family would like to extend special thanks to the Asheville Fire Department, Wake Forest Baptist Hospital and the SECU Family House Winston-Salem for their care and compassion during Jim’s battle with cancer.

A Memorial Service will be held at 1:00 PM on Friday, September 10 in the Chapel of Groce Funeral Home at Lake Julian. Jim’s family will receive friends at the funeral home immediately following the service.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that memorial donations be made in Jim’s name to the SECU Family House (


Memorial Service: September 10, 2021 1:00 pm

Room: Chapel

Groce Funeral Home at Lake Julian
72 Long Shoals Road
Arden, NC 28704


Visitation: September 10, 2021 2:00 pm

Groce Funeral Home at Lake Julian
72 Long Shoals Road
Arden, NC 28704


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  1. JIM


  2. Such a sweet man..he was well loved .always had a smile .. and enjoyed his time on earth w his family..he will be missed..God bless his dear family..and especially his wife Kelli…love you..sweet lady..💜

  3. As an Asheville Police Officer, it was always a true pleasure to see Jims smiling face while passing between the Fire station and Police Dept. He gave to his community unselfishly for many years. On many occasions I had the opportunity to work side by side with him as first responders. Many memories. Rest in peace, jim. We will see you again. No more pain.

  4. I am so sorry for your loss Jim and I worked together at the A.F.D.for years and at the same station.
    We remain friends after we both retired.
    Our Father is faithful, always near and so are our Prayers for your family.

  5. Our sincere condolences to the family of Jim. He certainly was well-liked by our family. My parents would see him and Kelli in different places around and would always mention how nice it was to see them. Heaven has gained a friendly soul!

  6. I worked with and trained with Jim at the Asheville Fire Dept. for nearly 30 years. He always had a smile and was fun to be around, he was a great guy. He will be missed. May God bless all his family and friends.

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