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Pennsylvania Governor Rendell Remembers, Celebrates the Life of Lt. Governor Catherine Baker Knoll During Capitol Tribute

HARRISBURG, Pa., Nov. 21 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ --During a memorial service in the Capitol Rotunda,Governor Edward G. Rendell today remembered Lieutenant Governor Catherine Baker Knoll as a lifelong teacher, an important partner in public service, and a tireless advocate for the people of Pennsylvania.

"As the first woman elected lieutenant governor, Catherine was a noted and storied public servant," said Governor Rendell. "Her family and her faith were driving forces in her life and, until the time of her illness, she was a passionate advocate for everyone, especially children, who she loved to teach.

"Catherine worked hard because she wanted you to know that she was for you and that she wanted to help you. She was one of the most enthusiastic, passionate, caring and compassionate people to ever serve Pennsylvania in elected office. She will be missed in this building and throughout the commonwealth."

Governor Rendell extended condolences to Knoll's many family and friends, who were joined by members of Congress, the Pennsylvania General Assembly, judges, officials from other states, and citizens from across Pennsylvania.

Following the Governor's remarks, speakers, including U.S. Senator Hillary Clinton, U.S. Rep. John Murtha, and Pennsylvania Lt. Governor Joseph B. Scarnati III each shared memories and stories of their time with Catherine Baker Knoll. They spoke of her energy on the campaign trail, her dedication to children's education, her generosity, and of trips she made to Walter Reed Army Hospital to meet wounded veterans and express her appreciation for their sacrifice.

Hundreds of mourners attended the memorial service today to pay respects to Knoll, who died Nov. 12 after battling cancer. She was in her second term as Lieutenant Governor.

During the ceremony, Knoll's casket was delivered to the Capitol by an Honor Guard consisting of members of the Pennsylvania State Police, Pennsylvania State Capitol Police and the Pennsylvania National Guard. She will lie in repose in the Rotunda until 2 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 22, for citizens who wish to pay final respects.

Most Rev. Kevin C. Rhoades, Bishop of Harrisburg, led the invocation and benediction.

Music was provided by the Keystone Christian Education Association All-State Choir, which is made up of 150 students from across the state.

Prior to being elected Lieutenant Governor, Knoll served eight distinguished years as state treasurer where she implemented and maintained the highest standards of accountability and integrity. She was particularly proud of her accomplishment in creating the TAP 529 Pennsylvania Tuition Account Program, which has since been renamed "nowU." She also kept Pennsylvania ahead of the technology curve by building a high-tech investment center that saved Pennsylvania hundred of millions of dollars through increased efficiency and returned nearly $2 billion in interest.

As Lieutenant Governor, Knoll played a vital role in addressing a variety of issues of critical importance to the people of Pennsylvania. She was also instrumental in issues including emergency management, domestic preparedness, economic development and local government. She served as the president of the Senate and chairwoman of the Board of Pardons, the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Council, and the Local Government Advisory Committee.

A native of Allegheny County, Knoll, 78, devoted her life to public service, first as a school teacher and business woman and later advancing issues such as finance, transportation, housing, education, environmental work, human rights, small business development, and urban and rural revitalization efforts.

Knoll's late husband, Charles, was a U.S. Postmaster. Their four children are Charles, Mina, Albert, and Kim Eric.

On Sunday, Nov. 23, Knoll will lie in repose from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. at Saint Paul Cathedral, 108 N. Dithridge St., in Pittsburgh. A public Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated by Bishop David A. Zubik, Bishop of Pittsburgh, at Saint Paul Cathedral at noon, Tuesday, Nov. 25. Interment will be private.

The Rendell administration is committed to creating a first-rate public education system, protecting our most vulnerable citizens and continuing economic investment to support our communities and businesses.To find out more about Governor Rendell's initiatives and to sign up for his weekly newsletter, visit


Chuck Ardo


SOURCE Pennsylvania Office of the Governor
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