Sarah Elizabeth Knorr

February 7, 1955July 16, 2020

Sarah Elizabeth (Oliver) Knorr, 65, died peacefully on July 16, 2020 after a long illness. Sarah was a fierce and tender-hearted advocate for people, animals, the environment, social justice, the arts and more. Her professional career gave her the perfect platform to live out her values as she advocated for those who really needed an advocate—during recent years working for the Commonwealth of Virginia at Community Rehabilitation Case Management Services in the Department for Aging and Rehabilitative Services. Early in her career she was able to bring people and the arts together on an intimate level at Cultural Experiences Unlimited in Norfolk, Va. She then worked tirelessly to help folks gain access to assistive technology at the Virginia Assistive Technology System. Sarah grew up in Virginia Beach as a part of a large extended family including her parents (now deceased), Stanley and Alvis Moore Oliver. She is survived by her husband, Kenneth H. Knorr and her children, and grandchildren,, Heather Knorr and Alba (Carrboro, NC) and Daniel Knorr, Amy and Emilyn Moon (Lake Tahoe, CA), as well as three sisters, Ginger Smith (Bill/Williamsburg VA), Anne Shotwell (Bob/Glen Allen, VA) and Jean Klughart (Kevin/Denton, TX) and too many nieces, nephews, cousins and friends to count. In Sarah’s office and home there were always feathers, rocks and shells to bring to mind her love of nature. In her emails there were poems by Mary Oliver, Mark Nepo and others as well as links to the best of what she’d heard on NPR. In her car there were books and CDs for herself and for her devoted chosen family members—well-loved sisters and brothers from other fathers and mothers. Her love of art was expressed by the art she bought and displayed from emerging artists and by the art she wore—jewelry and clothing that expressed who she was and what she loved. And always . . . always in the back of Sarah's mind there was a thoughtful essay, story or poem that she was composing. Many of those who loved Sarah feel that they will continue to know and love her and that somehow she’ll connect her friends and family members in a way that the dance will go on, with her cheering us on from the sidelines. If you’d like to make a donation in Sarah’s memory, please choose an organization that supports some of her core values: racial and social justice, disability rights, access to the arts, environmental causes, end-of-life care or animal rights. Arrangements have been entrusted to the Staunton Chapel of Reynolds Hamrick Funeral Homes. Relatives and friend may share condolences and memories online with the family by visiting


Sarah Elizabeth Knorr

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Wally Everiss

September 1, 2020

I was so sorry to hear about the loss of your wife. Please know that my prayers are with you and your family during this difficult time.

Patricia Goodall Strawderman

August 11, 2020

So very sorry to learn of Sarah's transition from our earthly plane. I had heard that she was again battling her always, with grace and quiet determination. We exchanged emails periodically, she always thoughtfully sent me notice of things she knew I'd be interested in. We talked about meeting soon for lunch or dinner, but we never got around to it. 😢 Sarah was a peaceful, loving soul who moved quietly through the world, leaving her unique Birkenstock footprints softly upon the earth. Warm thoughts and condolences to Ken, her family, and her many friends and clients and acquaintances who loved her. She was the best of us. 💔💝

Janet Downs

August 6, 2020

Ken - Our sincere love and hugs and sympathy in the passing of your wife.

Lorraine Gary

August 3, 2020

I met Sarah at Cultural Experiences Unlimited. (CEU) A program that embodied all that was Beautiful about Sarah. To the most vulnerable, forgotten, ignored or despised, Sarah and CEU brought beauty and reminders that even the smallest gesture, word or sound could bring a smile to any heart. I thank you for welcoming me into your world, for showing me the importance of recognizing beauty everywhere you can. Fly high my lovely one, we will miss you.

John and Anne Knopp

August 3, 2020

We are so sorry for the loss of Sarah to your family. We know she was a wonderful person who meant so much to everyone who knew her. Though grief is hard, the Lord gives us hope, and He promises redemption: "I will ransom them from the power of the grave; I will redeem them from death. Where, O death, are your plagues? Where, O grave, is your destruction?"
We have wonderful memories of our friendship with your family, and those ties will forever be real. Your grief is shared, your burden is ours as well. Please always think of us as friends and call on us anytime.
John and Anne Knopp


August 3, 2020

Please accept our condolences. Many have lost a good friend.
God's Peace,
Ray and Camille Lesoine

Naama Zahavi-Ely

August 2, 2020

A wonderful person. I knew her in Richmond in the early 1990s at VATS, and we reconnected last September when she and Ken came to Opera in Williamsburg's The Pearl Fishers and we met for lunch. I am so glad she took the time to reconnect. She will be missed. Love to all of you.

Frances Koehler

July 31, 2020

It was an honor to have known the gentle and dignified person of Sarah Knorr. She very much loved her family, her friends and all those individuals whose lives were enhanced by her devoted caring work. She was one of the rare individuals who made you feel as if you had met an earth angel. Two very good souls came together when she met Ken and we know that her memory will live on in his heart and in many hearts.
Frances Koehler and Marty Flannery

Deb Sheffer

July 29, 2020

Sarah was a thoughtful person with a tender heart. I will always remember with gratitude how, when my son died by suicide in 2008, she gifted me a John O'Donahue book with comforting sentiments inscribed inside. It was immensely comforting to me, and turned me onto other books by the same author. (Incidentally, John O'Donahue was also a similarly thoughtful person who also died too soon.)
My hope is that Ken, Heather and Daniel - and other close family and loved ones will hold her memories close but remember to treat each other with much love and consideration in the early days as you adapt to life without her.
Much love to you all.
Deb and Curt Sheffer

Betty Burke

July 20, 2020

So sorry for your loss. Prayers for comfort for the family.