Obituary for James I. McKnight, Sr.: 1931-2019

James I. McKnight, Sr. passed away peacefully with his loving wife by his side at the Seven Sisters Living Center in Hot Springs, SD on June 29, 2019.

James (Jim) was born in Colman, SD on March 8, 1931 to Edward I. and Edna E. McKnight. In 1935 the family moved to the family ranch north of Edgemont where Jim attended Marty School and graduated from Edgemont High School in 1950.

After graduation from High School Jim went to work for the Civil Service Dept. of Defense at Igloo, ending up at Ellsworth AFB. He married Lorraine Foster and they had three children, Edna Louise, Ester and James Jr.

On February 4, 1967 Jim married Joyce Gerken who worked beside and helped Jim in all of his endeavors, which included his love of horses and raising cattle. In 1981 Jim and Joyce moved Colorado and he worked at Ft. Carson until returning to Rapid City in December 1987 when he retired after a 37 year Civil Service career. After retiring from the Civil Service, Jim worked at Walmart from 1992-1999.

At age 74 he started selling feed for Mueller’s Feed Mill, Inc, in Martin, SD and for Smart Lick in Belle Fourche, SD. He started his own feed company “Never Done Ranch Supply” in 2004.

Jim was infamous for his “horse trading” abilities. He was also a longtime member of the Marshall Posse in Pennington Co. Jim’s philosophy in life was “to treat everyone just like you wanted to be treated yourself” and to “always remember there is someone bigger than you or I, maybe not in this human life, but in spirit.”

Jim is survived by his wife, Joyce McKnight of Hot Springs; daughters, Edna Louise McKnight and Esther Marie McKnight, both of Arkansas; son, James I McKnight Jr of San Diego, CA; sisters in law, Shirley McKnight of Edgemont, Ellen McKnight of Rapid City, and Shirley McKnight of Portland Oregon, Carol Pritchard of Great Falls MT and Shirley Vollmer of Sioux Falls; numerous Grandchildren, Great Grandchildren, and nieces and nephews; along with special friends, Michelle Merrill and Deb Legge, both of Rapid City.

Jim was preceded in death by his parents; brothers, Art, John and Dick; and sister, Reva.

A memorial service will be held at Kirk Funeral Home in Rapid City on Friday, July 19 at 1:00 pm. All relatives and friends are considered Honorary Pallbearers.