Christina "Chris" Knippling, 67, of Sioux Falls, passed away on Wednesday, December 26, 2012 at the Heart Hospital in Sioux Falls. Mass of Christian Burial will begin at 10:00 a.m. on Friday, January 4, 2013 at St. Joseph Cathedral, Sioux Falls. Visitation will be one hour prior to the start of the mass with a Rosary being prayed at 9:30 a.m. Interment will be in the St. Michael Cemetery, Sioux Falls, SD.
Christina (Chris) Wilkinson Knippling, was born October 28th, 1945 in Montreal Quebec, Canada. She was the tenth child of Wilfrid and Thelma (Ryan) Wilkinson. She attended St. Rita’s grade school, Pius X H.S. and then graduated from the Montreal General Hospital’s Nursing School as a R.N.A.
Following graduation she spent a year in Desmarais, Alberta. Serving as a missionary, working with young Cree children. She then moved to London, England, for ten months helping her sister Carole. Upon her return she worked at the Montreal General Hospital.
A visit to South Dakota in 1971 changed her life completely when she met and fell in love with Lambert Knippling. They were married later that year on August 14th at Immaculate Conception Parish, in Stephan S.D.
Although they never had children themselves, many summers found their home bursting with mischief and laughter as they welcomed Lambert’s grandchildren and Chris’ nieces and nephews from Canada. and England. They were happily married for 13 years. Lambert passed away March 5, 1985.
After Lambert death, Chris moved to Chamberlain S.D. where she worked at Mid Dakota Hospital. She completed Foster Parent Training, and spent the next 10 years opening her home and sharing her love with 42 children, three of whom she adopted.
She earned a degree in Food Management and worked for the Chamberlain High School. Later she changed jobs and worked for the Chamberlain Nursing Home and Assisted Living Home where she brought love and laughter to many elderly people.
In 2009 Chris ‘s health required her to move to Sioux Falls, there she lived with her friend Yvette Geraets. On Dec 10th she had heart valve repair surgery. She passed away on Dec 26th. from complications due to this surgery.
Chris had a deep faith and served God well. She taught Catechism for years at Stephan, served on parish councils, was an active member in Alter society, and loved singing in the choir. She was a person many turned to and could count on. She was a great example of Faith by her cheerful acceptance of the many crosses God sent her. She was especially appreciative of God’s gift of beauty in nature and enjoyed capturing it with her ever present camera. She will be dearly missed by many!
Chris is preceded in death by her husband Lambert, her parents, three brother-in-laws, one sister-in law, and a niece and nephew. She is survived by her siblings: Ursula (Jean) Lafontaine, Wilfred (Joan) Wilkinson, Gerry (Frank) Legrove, Joan (Gilles) Lusignan, Carole (Tom) O’Neill, Tommy (Audrey) Wilkinson, Frank (Cynthia) Wilkinson, and John (Claire) Wilkinson, all from Canada. Sr. Eleanor Wilkinson OSSR of St. Louis Missouri. Also by 36 nieces and nephews and numerous grand and great grand nieces and nephews.
Happy to have lived close enough to share daily life and special moments with Chris are, Mary and Allan Knippling and their ten children, and her very close friend Yvette Geraets. May she rest in peace.