Vietnam Veteran's Remains Flown Home By His Son

Erika Holt
August 10, 2019

On Thursday, Knight - a pilot for Southwest - flew his father's remains back to the place where he last saw him 52 years ago, Dallas Love Field Airport.

A joint US-Laotian team recovered remains from the crash site earlier this year and they were identifed as Major Knight's through dental records, according to the Pentagon's Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency.

Relatives watched along with airport and airline employees as the flag-draped casket was carried off the plane with military honors. "That was at Love Field in Dallas Texas".

"To be able to do this, to bring my father home, I'm very, very honored and very lucky".

Captain Bryan Knight - now a pilot for Southwest Airlines - was not only there for the long-awaited return, but had the honor of flying his father home.

The effort to find Knight and identify his remains started in 1991, and US and Laos investigators found a crash site and life support items three years later.

"When he left from this very airport to fight in Vietnam his five-year-old son came to the airfield and waved goodbye". In 1957, he was accepted for pilot training in Texas and after the program served as a fighter pilot in France and Germany.

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Knight's obituary describes him as "a devoted and loving son, brother, husband, father and friend" who was well-liked by those with whom he served.

He received his orders to go to war in 1966 and was deployed to Udorn Royal Thai Air Force Base, from where he flew daily combat missions. He reported to the 602nd Fighter Squadron at Udorn Royal Thai Air Force Base in January of 1967, and flew combat missions nearly daily until being shot down May 19 of that year.

From there, Captain Knight successfully coordinated his schedule with the airline to make sure that he could be the one to fly his father home.

Canadian journalist Jackson Proskow, who happened to be waiting at the gate where Knight's plane was arriving, documented the "incredible moment" in a series of moving posts on Twitter.

"Airports rarely see moments of quiet-but for a few brief minutes, Dallas Love Field fell absolutely silent", he wrote. "As Flight 1220 from Oakland taxied toward the jet bridge, two airport firetrucks provided a sombre water salute while the ground crew stood in formation". How many people would ever have this kind of opportunity to do this?

Col. Roy Knight will be buried in Weatherford, Texas on Saturday.

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