Sign In For Members Join Sign In
  • Donate

  • For Members

  • Who We Are

  • Our Mission Our Faith Supreme Officers About Membership
  • What We Do

  • Charity Insurance Invest Programs Scholarships Churchloan
  • Get Involved

  • Join Donate Find a Council Store College Councils
  • News Hub

  • Featured News Everyday Heroes Press Releases Social Media Hub Photos Videos
  • Contact Us

  • Safe Environment Program

  • Careers

  • Who We Are

    What We Do

    Get Involved

    News Hub

    Knights Mourn Passing of Virgil C. Dechant

    Virgil C. Dechant was the Order’s longest-serving supreme knight, holding the office from 1977 to 2000.

    2/16/2020
    Virgil C. Dechant
    Prayer Card
    Supreme Knight Anderson’s eulogy for Virgil Dechant

    Memorial contributions may be made to the Virgil C. and Ann L. Dechant Scholarship awards for seminarians.Click here The Knights of Columbus mourns the loss of Past Supreme Knight Virgil C. Dechant, who passed away in his sleep at the age of 89 during the early morning hours of February 16, 2020. He was the Order’s longest-serving supreme knight, holding the office from 1977 to 2000.

    “God has called home a good man and one of the Knights’ great leaders,” said Supreme Knight Carl Anderson. “Virgil Dechant used to say that his goal was to leave the Knights better than he found it, and in myriad ways, he accomplished that. He leaves a lasting legacy and an excellent example of what it means to be a Knight and a fraternalist. Nowhere is this more true than in his home state of Kansas, which remains in many ways a model jurisdiction.”

    Virgil Dechant joined the Knights in 1949 and was a member of LaCrosse (Kansas) Council 2970 and St. Augustine Council 2340 in Liebanthal, Kansas. A very successful businessman, in addition to operating a private farm in Kansas, Dechant owned and operated his own car dealership and farm equipment firm. Dechant came to New Haven in 1967 to serve as the supreme secretary. Ten years later, he was elected supreme knight.

    As supreme knight, Virgil Dechant oversaw tremendous growth in the Order’s membership as well as in its assets and insurance business, while also opening the Order to greater involvement by the wives and families of its members. In addition, Mr. Dechant forged a close relationship with the Vatican during the pontificate of St. John Paul II, leading the Order to sponsor numerous renovation projects – including of the façade of St. Peter’s Basilica, and working with the pope to promote the faith in Eastern Europe, which was then behind the iron curtain.

    Dechant is survived by his wife, Ann, their four children and several grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

    Watch the video tribute to Past Supreme Knight Virgil C. Dechant and his contributions to the Order and the Church.

    PRESS RESOURCES

    PRESS

    Logos & Emblems

    Photo Library

    Press Releases

    Recent News

    Supreme Convention

    Video Library

    PUBLICATIONS

    Chaplain's Report

    Columbia

    District Deputy Reminder

    Knightline

    Knights in Action

    Share your Knights in Action News

    FOR MEDIA INQUIRIES

    Please contact: Joseph Cullen, 203-415-9314,
    Joseph.Cullen@kofc.org

    Knights of Columbus 1 Columbus Plaza New Haven, CT 06510 203-752-4000

    Connect With #KOFC

    Who We Are

    Our Mission Our Faith Supreme Officers About Membership

    What We Do

    Charity Insurance Invest Programs Scholarships Churchloan

    Get Involved

    Join Donate Find a Council Store College Councils

    Member Resources

    Sign In For Members Safe Environment Program Brand Assets
    This website uses cookies, including third-party cookies, to optimize the functionality of the website and for website analysis and statistics. To find out more about cookies and how to change your cookie settings, please go to our Cookie Policy. Click Allow if you agree to the use of cookies.