Jesse Paul Fox Jr., long-time knifemaker known for his electric-motor-driven folder and winning the W.W. Cronk Award, died Nov. 19. He was 74.
Known to most by his middle name of Paul, Fox was a long-time member of the Knifemakers’ Guild and owner of Pioneer Woodcarving. As Fox’s friend and fellow maker Tim Britton noted on The Knife Network, “Paul may have been one of the most creative knifemakers of all time. He was perhaps best known for his electric-motor-driven folder and a series of very fancy knives that were a lot like sculpture. He won the W.W. Cronk Award at the Knifemakers’ Guild shows till they asked him to stop entering and let someone else win.
“Paul is the only maker I know who experimented with his own YAG laser and a trailing-wire EDM machine. The industry will miss him and so will his many friends throughout ‘knifedom.’ Paul and his wife Martha would appreciate our kind thoughts and prayers.”
According to Britton, Fox had a great sense of humor. “Paul had a Chevy Suburban that he bought at a North Carolina State Surplus auction for $700,” Tim recalled. “It was ugly, yellow and very beat up. He took it to Hendricks Motors of NASCAR fame and had them put a full race motor in it. Damned thing would fly and Paul loved nothing better than challenging redneck racers and usually beating them. Guess you have fugured out by now, that dude was a character!
“Paul was very much at home with locals—guys from the garage, bread-truck drivers, etc. He was one of a kind, like so many of us in knifemaking. I can still see Paul using the remote control boat to chase geese off his pond!”
A private service will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be sent to Catawba Regional Hospice 3975 Robinson Rd. Newton, NC 28658. Bass-Smith Funeral Home is handling the services.