Tom Knox

January 12, 1936March 30, 2018
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Tom Knox, 82, of Fort Wayne, Indiana, passed away on Friday, March 30, 2018. Tom was very well known in the community for being a referee for various sports for over 60 years. He was a member of IHSAA Officials Association and Metro Youth Sports. Tom was also a member of Zion Lutheran Church. Tom enjoyed his children and grandchildren and also watching their sporting events over the years.

Tom is survived by his children, Carolyn Knox, Ronald (Karen) Knox, and Tomisha Knox; grandkids, Arin Knox-Hodges, Andrew Knox, Brandon Knox, and Austin Knox; 4 great-grandkids; and siblings, Elaine Day, Clarence Starks Jr, Alberta Dukes, and Gail (Larry) Starks. He was preceded in death by his parents, Clarence and Annabelle (Hatcher) Starks Sr.; brother, Gabriel D. Starks; and sister, Martha Ann Curry.

Funeral service will be 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, April 7, 2018, at Zion Lutheran Church (2313 S. Hanna Street, Fort Wayne, Indiana 46803) with visitation one hour prior. Visitation will also be 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. and 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Friday, April 6, 2018, at Klaehn, Fahl & Melton Funeral Home (6424 Winchester Road, Fort Wayne, Indiana 46819). Burial will follow at Concordia Cemetery Gardens.

Memorial contributions may be made to Miller’s Merry Manor and Zion Lutheran Church.


  • Henry Chapman, Honorary Pallbearer
  • Clarence Starks Jr., Honorary Pallbearer
  • Ron Ryan, Honorary Pallbearer
  • Bo Stokes, Honorary Pallbearer
  • Tom Hughes, Honorary Pallbearer
  • Robert Hatcher, Honorary Pallbearer
  • Andrew Knox, Pallbearer
  • Brandon Knox, Pallbearer
  • Arin Knox, Pallbearer
  • Austin Knox, Pallbearer
  • James Ridley, Pallbearer
  • Roscoe Johnson, Pallbearer


  • Visitation Friday, April 6, 2018
  • Visitation Saturday, April 7, 2018
  • Funeral Service Saturday, April 7, 2018

Tom Knox

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kevin hapner

April 4, 2018

i played slo-pitch softball in its heyday, the 70's and 80' knox was probably the most respected umpire around...always cordial and a darn good ump condolences to the knox family, may the good Lord bless you and may MR. KNOX RIP......

Cary Cavacini

April 4, 2018

Had the opportunity of having Tom ref many a Homestead Football games when I was a coach. Tom's biggest asset was he was a great teacher of the players. Many times, instead of throwing a flag for a minor infraction, he would school the young player on what he did was wrong and not to do it again.

Walter Jordan

April 3, 2018


The thousands of us who has ever played or had a child/grandchild play youth sports in Fort Wayne knew, loved, and has been touched by “The Legend” Mr Tom Knox!

Like everyone in our community, Mr Knox always would make time to support and love on our youth, programs and community! No game was to small or too big for him!

The first time I called and asked him to be one of my three officials for my NBA sanctioned Parade of Stars games he says with excitement...”I’m there Walt! In fact, mark me down for every year! ...And I got Ronnie (son) too! Mark It down, we got ya!” #Special!

His style, special ways of making calls (ie: “You Can’t Do That!” - ‘Stay Here!’)😀, keen ability of encouraging players on both teams during play, always showing love to everyone within reach of his voice!

But there was nothing quite like sitting down listening, taking in his amazing wisdom, stories, life/sports nuggets and giant personality! Just thinking of him brings a smile to my face and laughter to my soul!

On behave of the Jordan family, stable of close friend/teammates, and our entire Fort Wayne community, we say THANK YOU SIR!!! Praying for Ronnie, Carolyn and the rest of the Knox family!

We are all better for knowing you! RIP Legend! Love Ya! ❤️💜💛💙💚🙏

Johnny Barnes

April 3, 2018

My condolences to the Knox Family. Tom was not only a great referee and coach, he was one of the early, premier basketball players in Fort Wayne. He often played at the McCulloch Center and at the indoor court in Westfield. When he played, we all sat down and watched. His influence on younger players who too would later become stars was wide and deep! God's finger has touched him, and he now sleeps.

Raymond Odom

April 3, 2018

Mr.Knox is what all the athletes in my day called him. I officiate for 30 years and tried to ref like Mr. Knox. Mr. Knox was a good friend and great person . All i can say is one of Mr. Knox's saying is Stay Here!!! Love you family.


Alice Cummings

April 2, 2018

My prayers & condolences go out to the Knox family for their great loss. My God comfort and strengthen you thru this very trying time. I love you all very much!!!