Heather Knopp

Heather Amy Knopp

Saturday, July 7th, 1956 - Tuesday, June 11th, 2019
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Heather Amy Knopp passed away peacefully in her Boulder, Colorado home on Tuesday, June 11, 2019, in the presence of her family.

Heather was born in Ridgewood, New Jersey, grew up in Wyckoff, New Jersey, the fourth daughter of Walter and Betty Knopp. She attended local schools and graduated with a BA and MA from the University of Colorado in Boulder. Following her graduation, she served in the Peace Corp for three years, stationed in Chiquimula, Guatemala. She subsequently taught English in Cuzco, Peru before returning to the USA in 1984.

Heather’s Montessori teaching career began in Saluda, NC. She returned to Boulder and worked as a preschool teacher at Mountain Shadows Montessori (Boulder) and Mitchell Montessori (Denver). She was instrumental in the establishment of the Montessori program in the Boulder Valley School system, from which she retired in 2017.

Heather was a living, breathing National Geographic subscription and traveled around the world multiple times. Over the course of many years, she traveled to Nepal, Kashmir, India, Turkey, Cyprus, Europe, South America, Africa and the Pacific Islands. She has seen the Pyramids, the Taj Mahal, the Blue Mosque, Kathmandu, Machu Picchu and the Greek Isles, to name only a few. She trekked higher than Mount Everest base camp, and did much scuba diving in her favorite place of all, Bali. Heather always returned with slides, tales of adventure and culinary experiences.

She cautioned people not to delay their ‘bucket list', and certainly took her own advice. Her bucket list was the size of a super tanker, and she completed hers on June 3 when Trevor Noah brought South Africa to her during a FaceTime conversation. She often said that she was not a collector of things, she was collecting experiences. Heather was particularly fond of hiking and the outdoors and was an avid reader.

She is survived by her mother, Margaret Elisabeth (Betty) Knopp of Columbus, NC, her sisters Jennifer (David) Pettinicchi, Cynthia (Frank) McKinstrie; her aunt Mary Smith; nephews Andrew Davidson, Paul Davidson, Grant McKinstrie, Ryan Gardner; nieces Katie Knopp, Kelly Pettinicchi and Ana Pettinicchi. Heather was pre-deceased by her father, Walter Knopp and her sister Anita Knopp.

A memorial celebration of her remarkable life will be held on August 24 at 2:00 p.m. at the Community United Church of Christ, 2650 Table Mesa Dr. Boulder, CO 80305.

Donations can be made in Heather’s memory to Halcyon Hospice and Palliative Care in Boulder CO or

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Service Details

  • Service

    Saturday, August 24th, 2019 | 2:00pm
    Saturday, August 24th, 2019 2:00pm
    Community United Church of Christ
    2650 Table Mesa Dr.
    BOULDER, CO 80305
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email


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Jackie Marrinan

Posted at 02:42pm
We were introduced to Heather in 1998 when my son started preschool at Community Montessori. This was our initial experience with BVSD. She gave my sons an excellent start of their school careers. She helped me navigate our son's ADHD diagnosis with
patience and love. Heather was one of the genuine and caring people in our lives here in Boulder. I met up with her a couple of years ago when a mutual friend passed away from cancer and she bravely exclaimed that she would battle her own illness. She showed up for others amid her own fight and shared her compassion and support. Heather has provided me with memories I
will cherish for a lifetime. I am honored to have known Heather and we are so sorry for the loss of a truly wonderful soul.
Regards, Chris, Jackie, Keenan and Erik Marrinan

angie nevare

Posted at 12:54pm
Heather was a true friend to my daughter. I first meet Heather when my daughter moved from her apartment to her home in Louisville. Heather was helping her move. How many true friends help you move? When I asked her how many children did she have, she said all of her students were her children (she meant it too). Rest in Peace, Heather. Love, Angie Nevarez

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