It is with a heavy heart that we share the news of the passing of Bill McKnight, an industry veteran who served 25 years with Dana Corp. and roughly 10 years with Mahle/Clevite. McKnight was diagnosed with IPF (Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis) in 2019, and he lost his fight to the disease on March 17, 2021.
McKnight retired from Mahle in 2019. For his contributions to the industry, McKnight was set to receive PERA’s Lifetime Achievement Award that year, but due to a mix up with the FAA and flying with oxygen, Bill was unable to attend the convention to receive it.
With the 2020 convention cancelled due to the pandemic, PERA planned to make the presentation in St. Louis this year. However, as his health deteriorated, it was clear Bill wouldn’t be able to attend. PERA Executive VP Joe Polich was scheduled to present the award this week, but sadly was unable to before Bill’s passing.
“It is unfortunate that Bill was unaware of his recognition,” Polich says. “This has to be a first for the industry to keep this secret for nearly two years.”
Despite not getting a chance to receive his well-deserved Lifetime Achievement Award, Bill was certainly a great example of a man devoted to to this industry and the companies he served. He was always helping educate people on this industry and it’s complex components.
Bill’s family has decided to hold a celebration of life party for him sometime this summer so they can hear and share everyone’s stories about their father. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the entire McKnight family for their loss.