Anna Lou Simplicio Knauf

Born on October 7, 1931 in Keystone, West Virginia
Departed May 27, 2023 in Melbourne, Florida

With heavy hearts, we announce the passing of Anna Lou Simplicio Knauf of Melbourne, FL on May 27, 2023, beloved mother, sister, aunt, nana, and dear friend.

Born October 7, 1931, in Keystone, WV, she was the second of ten children born to Italian immigrants Antonio Simplicio and Giustina Benedetto Simplicio. Growing up, she developed a talent for music and baking (a master pie maker!) which her many siblings enjoyed immensely.

After graduating from Northfork High School in 1949, Anna obtained a degree from Concord College, Athens, WV, and continued her education at American University in Washington, DC. She flourished at college, enjoying the beauty, culture, and music opportunities available in our nation’s amazing capital city.

She later moved to Eau Gallie, Florida, in the mid 1950’s while working for Pan Am Airlines, where she met her future husband Frank Knauf, Jr. They shared their interest in reading, flying planes, gardening, travel, farm life, a strong work ethic and family commitments. She and Frank were married on Valentine’s Day, 1958 in Powhatan, WV and a whole new adventure began.

After spending time in Germany with Frank who was stationed there while serving in the Army, the couple returned to Florida. Once establishing roots in the Melbourne, FL area, she became a parishioner at Ascension Catholic Church and the couple later started a small but successful Real Estate Agency, which continued until their retirement in the mid-1990s. She managed her family of eight children with a loving heart, comforting smile, devout faith, sharp intellect, and a firm grip of family values.

Anna was truly a role model and inspiration with the sweetest disposition. She was a blessing to many and was blessed by a beautiful family who provided gentle, loving care for her until the very end. The large void in our hearts can never be filled.

In addition to her parents, Anna is pre-deceased by her husband of 60 years, Frank R Knauf, Jr, son Howard Knauf, sons-in-law, Eric Loenichen and John Runyon, sisters, Josephine Kiebler, Antonette Simplicio, Nancy Simplicio; brothers Vasile, Luke and Anthony Simplicio, Jr., bros-in-law, Eddie Shea and Tom Powers.

Survivors include her sisters Micheline Shea Noble, Giustina (Toby) Rhodes, Rosalie (James) Owrey; brother-in-law Giorgio Curletto; her children Marian Loenichen, Valerie (Kevin) Runyon, Nancy Petratuona, David (Isela) Knauf, Della Knauf, Sonja (John) Apfelthaler, Frank R. Knauf, III and daughter-in-law Debbra Knauf; numerous grandchildren, great grandchildren, nephews, and nieces.

A heartfelt thank you to family and all who were involved with Anna’s care, in particular, her loving and devoted assistants Gabriel and Maggie. An additional thank you to Deacon Bill, who made countless visits to continue her Catholic faith.

A service to celebrate Anna’s life will be held at Ascension Catholic Church, 2950 N. Harbor City Blvd., Melbourne, FL 32935, with a viewing at 10:00 a.m. and a funeral mass at 11:00 a.m. on Thursday, June 8, 2023. With interment to follow at Cape Canaveral National Cemetery, 5525 US-1, Mims, FL 32754, at 2:30 p.m.

Guestbook Entry

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8 entries.
Shirley Todd from Alderson WV wrote on August 15, 2023:
Mrs. Knauf was a great woman. She was true to her faith and instilled it in her children as well. She was always humming and gave the biggest smiles that lit up her whole face. If you asked for advice she gave it and didn't beat around the bush. I never felt unwelcome in her home and I never went hungry either. She was a shining star in this dim world. I will never forget her laugh. I'm sure she is in Heaven with her husband Frank and family. Rest in Peace Mrs. K. You touched more lives and hearts than you knew.
Val Runyon from Atlanta wrote on June 14, 2023:
Hey Mama, We all miss your smiling face and your great sense of humor. You were AMAZING beyond belief. With 8 children you cooked nightly meals, sewed clothing, Christmas tree skirts, curtains, bedspreads & pillow cases… you played instruments, sold real estate, designed model homes, did the book keeping & files, attended all our concerts, recitals, games etc. you got your pilots license… you catered yearly Christmas parties, not to mention all of our birthday parties. You did all this and always found time to love on us! You were such a spit fire of a person! I’ve never seen one person be so helpful & involved & loving to so many people. I really miss you mama and I know you are happy to be pain free and visiting w/ your parents, your sisters & brothers, your son Howy and all your other family & friends. I will miss you forever Mamma …. Your favorite daughter 😉
Brian Petratuona from Pleasanton wrote on June 1, 2023:
RIP Ann! You were a amazing person. A rock for so many! You lived life to the fullest. No matter what you always had a smile on your face! Frank will be happy to see you and you both are together again.
Della Knauf from Melbourne wrote on May 31, 2023:
Mamma You have always taught and showed us the value of strengths and love.. You were the best mom, sister,wide, nana and great grandmother any one person can ever ask for. It has put a big hole in my heart. I will miss you and love you forever. Love you to eternity mom. From your ,"pink one" Della
Tracy L Wright from Melbourne wrote on May 31, 2023:
So sorry to hear of your loss. I never met her but I know her daughter (Nancy Petratuona) & her granddaughter (Rachelle Petratuona). Such beautiful amazing women. My prayers & deepest sympathies go out to the whole family.
Debbra Knauf from Melbourne wrote on May 31, 2023:
She was my mother-in-law. She loved everybody unconditionally. I just hope she is now singing, dancing walking talking with no pain and enjoying her family that are with her. And her son Howard, she was such a sweet lady, and tough at the same time. She lived a long, full life. She will forever be in our hearts. Sincerely, Debbra Knauf
Debbra Knauf from Melbourne wrote on May 31, 2023:
Anna was my mother-in-law. She was probably one of the sweetest individuals I’ve ever known. And she was a tough lady. She loved everybody unconditionally. I just pray that she is now dancing, singing, playing piano, talking and sitting with all her family members that are there with her she will be missed forever, I loved her very much Debbra Knauf
Elaine Miranda from Melbourne wrote on May 31, 2023:
Heartfelt sympathies for the loss of your Mom. The Gunter family has many fond memories of your Mom. Elaine Miranda

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