WEATHERFORD – Several Weatherford College facilities received new names Thursday during the Board of Trustees meeting, including the old Allied Health Building which will soon bear the name of 1st Lt. Jack L. Knight.
Knight is believed to be the only WC graduate to receive the Medal of Honor, America’s highest military award, given for personal acts of valor above and beyond the call of duty.
Board Chairman Frank Martin presented the request to his fellow trustees as he relayed some of Knight’s history.
A 1938 WC graduate, Knight was honored posthumously for his brave actions during World War II as a member of the U.S. Army, 124th Cavalry Regiment.
On Feb. 2, 1945, near LoiKang, Burma, Knight destroyed two Japanese pill boxes while protecting his troops from heavy concentrations of artillery and small-arms fire.
His brother, Curtis, was hit during the assault, and Knight ordered his men to see to his brother’s aid while he continued to take out enemies. Although unable to see after being blinded by explosions, he rallied his platoon and continued forward in the assault on the remaining pillboxes.
Knight was fatally wounded during the battle. The sight of the battle has since been named “Knight’s Hill.”
At age 27 he was buried in Cool, and four months later, his father accepted Knight’s Medal of Honor.
“I think it would greatly behoove our community and college to name this building after Jack Knight,” Martin said.
His fellow board members agreed and voted for the name change for the facility, which is being renovated to include WC’s Testing Center, Police Academy and a lecture hall. A ceremony is in the works for the college’s Veteran’s Day celebration in November.