"He took a very spiritual road, and he took it with the same level of confidence and commitment that he did with everything else in his life," said Richard LaBombard, who joined Knight on many skiing and fishing trips. "Doug showed his family and friends the most beautiful side of life, and brought us all closer to God."
"He had a way of exiting life that really taught us a lot," said Arnold. "His attitude, right up until the end, was as positive as you could get from anybody."
Knight was also heavily involved at AVCS as a Ski Club advisor and sound technician for school musicals. Vocal music teacher Steven Collier attested to his great rapport with students, both on and off the bus.
"The kids loved him," he said, noting Knight's positive attitude and attentiveness. "He made everybody feel like he was their best friend."
Collier will direct choral students from AuSable Valley in singing patriotic songs at the flag raising ceremony, just days after school is back in session.
"I think it will hit everybody really hard when we get back to school and we all start talking about him again," Collier said.
In honor of Knight's legacy at AVCS, a Doug Knight Scholarship Fund has been established to benefit future graduates of the school. Donations from the public are still being sought to bolster the endowment.
"I don't know anybody who has touched so many arms of the community; he had such diverse interests," Collier added. "This really is a community-wide loss."
Other musicians and guest speakers will also join in the tribute, which coincides with Patriot Day. Members of American Legion Post 504 in AuSable Forks will present a salute to members of the Armed Forces and the nation.
Though Knight was not a veteran, LaBombard said erecting a flagpole in his memory would be very appropriate because he was a true patriot who loved his country.