Demaine Funeral Home

5308 Backlick Road, Springfield, VA


Arvid Johan Knutsen

November 25, 1949February 7, 2014

Darik, Jaryd and Raedun would like to invite you all to help us celebrate the life and love of Arvid Knutsen. His preferred way for us to celebrate his memory is with a gathering where stories are shared, and we know he's bound to bring out a few in all of us.

Saturday March 29th In his home in Alexandria, VA Informal open house at 2pm, carrying on until we run out of stories.

Please forward to any and all that might be interested.


  • Arvid Knutsen: Love what you love Saturday, March 29, 2014


Arvid Johan Knutsen

have a memory or condolence to add?

Eddie Bines

March 28, 2014

To the family of Arvid,
My name is Eddie Bines and I'm a former student of Arvid at UNCG 1977-1979. I am so saddened to hear of his passing. He was a God send in my life and truly the link that bridged the vocal career of a young African American male coming from NC A&T State Univ. in Greeensboro to a wonderful career as a baritone. As a special student, he literally put his arms around me and said you have something special, I care and you can do it. Even as I type this, I can hear his deep voice resonating through me. I've thought about him often but was unable to locate him. I truly wish I could attend the open house on Saturday. I will always love Arvid and will never forget that he, through God's grace, set my career in motion and gave it wings.
May God bless you all richly and hopefully I will meet you one day. (336) 924-3241 H (336) 408-0746 C

Donald Hartmann

February 26, 2014

Arvid was one of a kind! I knew him from his early teaching days at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. As I have mentioned to many, he cast me in my very first opera role which lead to a lifelong career of singing! He was always responsible in helping me secure my first teaching position which lead to a lifelong career of teaching. Yep....he would drive us crazy! But, all of the students that he worked with at UNCG will remember his legacy as one that inspired excellence. His directing skills and his opera productions were first-rate. One simply can't forget his mumbling speech habits, his high pitched giggle, and those dimples.

Linda Ulferts Masters

February 25, 2014

A sad loss of a brilliant mind and voice.

Susan Savage Gillick

February 25, 2014

I knew John first as a neighbor - he lived across the street and down a couple of houses - he was 4 and I was 5. He came to my 5th birthday party and I even have a picture of all of us on our back porch. The next I really knew him was in h.s. I remember him as being very personable and friendly to just about everyone. I do remember him being on the basketball team, but my fondest memories are of being in the choral group we belonged to. Our group of about 35 teens was called the Select Choir, and if I do say so myself, we were awesome to listen to. With John's beautiful baritone and two sopranos, and an alto who also were blessed with beautiful voices, our group did not sound like teens, we sounded like a large group of adults. We went to state contests and a seminar at Augustana College in Rock Island, and even performed at Christmas in the Methodist Church - even as part of the group, we could hear how lovely the sound was. And the road trips - they were a lot of fun, too. Lots of laughter and great times and those made for very fond and happy memories. May John's dear family find comfort in that John was well loved by so many and seemed to love to create great memories. Plus that angelic voice is now truly of the angel choir!!!

F William Thomas

February 23, 2014

Arvid Johan Knutsen achieved much in life including a wonderful family he adored, high degrees, numerous awards for singing, heading the Opera Department of North Carolina, Greensboro, and serving at the national endowment for the arts

But before he was a man of stature, he was a boy growing up in Oregon, Illinois, where aside from his athletic prowess, he was known for his beautiful baritone voice. As a 16-year-old sophomore he performed the role of Escamillo in the school's production of Bizet's "Carmen." Friends from those days will recall with pride the musical accomplishments they shared with him in the operas, concerts and state competitions of Oregon High.

I was fortunate to have been Arvid's HS voice teacher, choral director and longtime friend.

Jeanne Brenz

February 22, 2014

Mac and I were so sorry to hear that Arvid had passed away. I have fond memories of the many times that he was my vocal coach at Northwestern University. I will never forget his magnificent voice when he performed La Boheme in the Chicagoland area. He had a really unique sense of humor that brought laughter to many people. Melanie, you and your beautiful family are in my prayers. Try to remember the really good times-I know that I will-
Jeanne and Mac Brenz (Rockport, Texas)

Rich Young

February 18, 2014

John was my "back door" neighbor (lived across the alley from us) growing up in Oregon, IL. Though he was a few years younger than me we often played together. And we sang together in the church choir, directed by his mother Carol. He had such a mature baritone voice even in high school. I regret that I lost contact after high school.

My sincere condolences to his family.

Charles Jensen

February 14, 2014

My sympathy and condolences go out to the Knutsen family. Having known Arvid for many years, I was saddened by his recent passing. We spoke, at length, about many subjects over the years, including the goings-on of his children. When I was a younger man, he spoke to me almost like a father would speak to his son; offering advice and guidance. If a man can leave a legacy in his lifetime of leaving the world a better place than he found it, I know of no one who has done a better job. May you rest in peace.

Nance, Lynn, Jason Kidwell

February 12, 2014

We were so sorry to hear of Arvid's passing. Our families have been friends since their move to Mclean when the children were young, and we have many fond memories of the times we all spent together over the years in both social and sports activities. It is truly a sad loss for everyone concerned.

Deb&Tom Fane

February 12, 2014

Our deepest sympathy to the family of Arvid. While growing up in Oregon, I knew John as the handsome, intelligent and talented older brother of my dear friend, Jonette. My heart aches for your loss.