Knight of the Year: Jerry Angus
Friday, Jun. 19, 2020
KEARNS — Jerry Angus, a retired air traffic controller and member of St. Francis Xavier Parish, has been named Knight of the Year 2020 by the Utah Knights of Columbus.
A convert to the Church from the Lutheran faith, Angus joined the Knights of Columbus council in his home parish six months after his baptism in 2008.
He was drawn to the organization because of their works in charity, fraternity, unity and patriotism, he said. “It brought back all those ideals instilled in me in the military. Good works, getting involved in the parish and helping the needy was something I was very interested in.”
Originally from Madison, Wisc., Angus served for 32 years in the Air Force, Air National Guard and Air Force Reserves, retiring at the rank of full colonel. He came to Utah in 1979 at the height of his career after he was hired by the FAA. In 2015, he retired from that position.
Angus was very involved in his local Knights council from the beginning. He has held the positions of Advocate, Deputy Grand Knight and Grand Knight. For the last two years, he has been a trustee and purchasing agent and has served as district deputy. During that time he created a new council in Copperton.
Angus was instrumental in helping his council welcome Hispanic members from the parish. At the beginning, the Knights held their meetings in both English and Spanish so that the new Knights would feel comfortable. That has worked so well that these days the Hispanic members have asked just to have the meetings in English, he said.
His membership in the organization has brought him closer to the Catholic Church and to his faith because “everything is focused on an aspect of the religion,” Angus said. “To me, the connectivity to the Knights and the good works that they do, they get you involved in your Catholic faith and in your parish.”
Since retirement, Angus has had more time to devote to service in the Knights of Columbus. He estimates that, prior to the pandemic, he spent 15 to 20 hours helping with the weekly Bingo council fundraiser and in other ways.
However, membership in the organization is not dependent on having a large amount of time to serve. Angus joined the Knights when he was still very involved in his career.
“The Knights only ask what you can do; if you end up doing only one hour a month, that would be great,” he said. “As you retire, you can put in more.”
Angus sees the Knights of Columbus as having an important role in the life of the local Church, even during the pandemic. Members of his council have continued to have their meetings by video conference and have served in other ways.
“During the pandemic, our priest, Fr. Eugenio Yarce, has been relying a lot on the Knights to act as ushers and lectors in our parish,” as services have been allowed, he said. Angus, along with some of his fellow Knights, also takes Communion to the homebound.
While he is happy to be named Knight of the Year, it is really all the Knights in his council who are the recipients of the award, he said.
“It’s not just one person; it’s the help of all the people,” he said. “I couldn’t accomplish all this if it wasn’t for all the good works from all the Knights in Council 5214 and the support from my parish and family.”
Angus and his wife, Anna, are the parents of two daughters and a son; they have seven grandchildren.
His membership in the Knights of Columbus has benefitted his whole family, he said. “It ends up pulling the family together.”
“He is a good friend, a good father and a good Catholic,” Immediate Past State Deputy Andy Airriess said of Angus when he announced the award in a May 30 videoconference meeting. “He’s always there when help is needed, have a question or just want to talk. He has done so much to make his council and parish what it is today.”