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Remains of Vietnam war pilot brought home to U.S. after decades

roy knight jr
Posted at 4:25 PM, Aug 09, 2019
and last updated 2019-08-09 21:23:07-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - An Air Force pilot killed during the Vietnam war will finally be laid to rest Saturday.

Major Roy Knight Jr. died in action in 1967 when his plane was shot down over Laos.

In the following decades there were multiple efforts to find his remains. It wasn’t until earlier this year that investigators discovered Knight and used dental records to identify him.

“It is remarkable; I can’t believe it happened,” said his son Roy Knight III of Valley Center.

Knight’s family had almost given up hope of seeing him buried.

“There's a bunch of emotions that happen. First is just enormous gratitude for the people that went in and got him and that we as a nation continued to try to find him.”

Thursday, Knight’s remains were taken from Laos to Dallas Love Field on a Southwest flight. In the cockpit was Knight’s oldest son, a Southwest pilot who saw his father leave for Vietnam at the same airport years ago.

“We came up with the idea of what if would it be possible, and it required both tremendous effort on the part of the Air Force and Southwest Airlines to make it happen,” Knight said.

Knight said his father was and always will be his hero.

“The tremendous respect and honor shown my father, and and there's no doubt he earned that as does every one of our armed forces, especially our fallen.”

Major Roy Knight Jr. will be buried in Weatherford, Texas.