Paul Douglas Knuth, age 74, passed away Sunday, May 27, 2018 at his home in Edinboro, Pennsylvania after a brief illness. Paul was Professor Emeritus and former Head of the Department of Geosciences at Edinboro University of Pennsylvania, where he taught for thirty years. Paul was born in Erie, Pennsylvania and graduated from McDowell High School in 1961. He earned a B.S. in Earth Science at Edinboro University of Pennsylvania in 1965 and an M.A. in Geography/Geology from Bowling Green State University in 1967.
Paul was a recognized expert on the Lake Erie coast and conducted research on shoreline erosion and bluff recession for more than three decades. In the course of his career, Paul contributed to major shoreline studies for the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Resources Coastal Zone Management Program, the Great Lakes Commission, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. He served as a scientific advisor at Presque Isle for many years, including an appointment as Chair of the Presque Isle State Park Advisory Committee. In addition, he consulted for public television programs in the United States and the United Kingdom, including the WQLN production “On Shifting Sands” and Oxford Scientific Films’ “Presque Isle: A Gift from the Lake,” shown on the program Nature. While at Edinboro and after his retirement, Paul served as an environmental consultant for several regional firms.
Among his many interests, Paul was a gifted builder and woodworker. In addition to designing and building two homes in Saegertown and Edinboro, Pennsylvania, he spent many years building and professionally restoring canoes and other small boats. Paul developed an expertise in figure carving in the Scandinavian flat plane style, selling works locally. Paul was also a skilled woodturner. Among other professional associations, Paul was a board member of the Wooden Canoe Heritage Association and a member of the Presque Isle Woodturners.
Paul’s public service included membership on the Edinboro University Foundation Board of Directors and General McLane School District Board of Directors, as well as volunteer work for the Bayfront Center for Maritime Studies and the National Park Service at Yellowstone National Park.
Paul's family and friends will always remember his great sense of humor, his willingness to share his knowledge and experience, his easy way of showing that he cared, and last but far from least, his obvious pride in his children.
Paul is survived by his wife Martha R. Knuth; four children and their spouses, Erik Paul Knuth, Dan Kelly Knuth and his wife Rose Rebecca Nativio, Sarah Elisabeth Knuth, Matthew William Knuth and his wife Yan Wang; and three grandchildren, Clifton Wesley Knuth, Shannon Marie Knuth, and Anna Wang Knuth.
Paul was predeceased by his father Edwin J. Knuth, mother Evelyn J. (Donihi) Knuth, sister Barbara Dorine (Knuth) Paris, and brother John Michael Knuth.
Arrangements will be private; no calling hours will be observed. Memorials may be made to the John Michael Knuth Memorial Scholarship Fund, Edinboro University of Pennsylvania, 210 Meadville Street, Edinboro, PA 16444.