Eight Bells: Jeff Knowles

Published on June 7th, 2018

Jeff Knowles

Jeff Knowles, who incurred a kite boarding accident on San Francisco Bay which kept him underwater for at least 10 minutes, succumbed to his injuries early on June 7. He was 29 years old.

Jeff grew up sailing at Ida Lewis Yacht Club in Newport, RI and competed in regattas around the country. He sailed on the St George’s high school team and was named an All-State Sailor before joining the Brown University Sailing Team where he became Team Captain, an honorable mention All-American, and an Academic All-American. He relocated to California to attend UC San Francisco to pursue a PhD in Neuroscience.

“Jeff passed away at far too young an age,” shared Dan Rabin, Brown University Assistant Sailing Coach. “I coached Jeff in sailing at Brown University, where he graduated in 2010. He was an incredibly free spirit both on and off the water. I’ve never seen anyone quite like him.

“I remember watching him do handstands on his 420 while still driving the boat in practice or coming in from a race at a regatta. I remember another time when he gave a regatta report from an event at Salve Regina, explaining to the team how you could anticipate a left shift from the smell of some deep fried food off of Goat Island.

“Though he was thoroughly committed to fun and enjoyment, he was also an intense competitor, and achieved a great deal of success in sailing. Jeff was another exceptional person that I wouldn’t have had the opportunity to cross paths with if not for sailing. The world was a better place when he was in it.”

Please join the Knowles family for a memorial celebration for Jeff on Saturday, June 30th at 4pm in Newport, RI at St. George’s School. They hope to see everyone there.

Editor’s note: Matt Knowles provides additional detail on Jeff’s life… click here.

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