Pottawattamie County

Rex James Knapp

 

RECEIVES PURPLE HEART AFTER DEATH

Mrs. Rex J. Knapp, 907 Sixth avenue, has received the Purple Heart from the war department, posthumously awarded her husband who died in action in the Solomons area on November 30, 1942.

A water tender 1/c, he had been in the navy for nine years and according to the citation accompanying the Purple Heart, had been in nine decisive battles. Knapp served on the Cruiser Minneapolis for four years and with 38 men in his command, was killed when the ship was torpedoed in November [30].

The bodies of the men killed were sealed into the ship and towed back to his former home, Pearl Harbor, for interment. Mrs. Knapp resided at Pearl Harbor at the time of the Japanese attack but has since returned to Council Bluffs.

 Besides his wife, he is survived by one son, Edward Joseph, age three, two daughters, JoAnne, age five, and Patricia Lue, 15 months; his parents, Mrs. and Mrs. E. J. Knapp, 618 South Sixth street; and one brother, Ray Willard Knapp, a pharmacist’s mate 3/c, who is now stationed at a base hospital in the South Pacific area.

Source: The Council Bluffs Nonpareil, Council Bluffs, Iowa, Wednesday, March 29, 1944, Page 9

Mrs. Rex Knapp has received posthumous award of the purple heart for her husband who was killed when his ship was torpedoed Nov. 30, 1942.

Source: The Council Bluffs Nonpareil, Council Bluffs, Iowa, Sunday, April 02, 1944, Page 2

Plan Memorial at Church Here

A memorial service commemorating five gold-star veterans of the war, will be observed in the Broadway Methodist church.

The five men, who died on widely separated fronts, are:

Rex Knapp, an engineer aboard the Minneapolis, was at Pearl Harbor, Dec. 7, 1941, and was killed in action, Nov. 30, 1942;

Ensign Earl Alter, pilot of a Flying Fortress, was killed in the Aleutians May 18, 1943 – his body is buried at Thunder Point, Adak island;

Robert Pierce, a graduate of Abraham Lincoln high school, was taken prisoner at Corregidor and died in a prison camp;

Don Supernois, chief machinist’s mate, a former student of Abraham Lincoln, was killed in action aboard the Destroyer USS Rowan, Sept. 11, 1943;

and Major John Robert Blayock, flying a bomber, was killed in action over France, De. 31, 1943.

Special features of the Sunday morning program will be the reading of the churche’s (sic) Honor roll by Miss Doris Killins; a reading of the poem, “High Flight,” (John Magee, Jr.) by Miss Joyce Grubb; “My Son” by his father, read by Miss Ruth Brown; Solo, “The Crossing of the Bar,” (Tennyson) by Mr. Doron Warren, past chaplain of the American Legion for the department of Iowa, and taps by Russell Hounshell. Other features will be added.

The families and friends of all the men on the honor roll of the church are especially requested to be present. A general invitation to this service is extended.

Source: The Council Bluffs Nonpareil, Council Bluffs, Iowa, Thursday, May 25, 1944
Mrs. Rex Knapp has received posthumous award of the purple heart for her husband who was killed when his ship was torpedoed Nov. 30, 1942.

Source: The Council Bluffs Nonpareil, Council Bluffs, Iowa, Sunday, April 02, 1944, Page 2

BODY OF BLUFFS SAILOR ON SHIP

Funeral Transport Docks at ‘Frisco

The body of a Council Bluffs sailor, who was killed Nov. 30, 1942 aboard the Cruiser Minneapolis off the Solomon islands, is aboard a grey army transport which slipped through the mists of the Golden Gate Friday at San Francisco with the first group of men who died in world war II – the first to fall and the first to come home.

Rex James Knapp, water tender 1/c, son of Mr. and Mrs. E. J. Knapp, 618 South Sixth street, is one of eight southwest Iowa war dead aboard the funeral ship Honda Knot, inbound from Honolulu with 3,208 bodies.

VFW In Charge.

Mrs. Julia Knapp, his mother and listed as next of kin of Red Knapp by the war department, said Friday her son’s body would be sent from Kansas City quartermaster depot to Council Bluffs, where it would be met by an honor guard from the Veterans of Foreign Wars post here, of which Rex was a member. The body will be sent to Defiance for burial, graveside services in charge of the VFW group.

Knapp, who was promoted to chief water tender the day he was killed, is survived by his parents, two brothers, Ray of Council Bluffs and Neil Knapp of Harlan; two sisters, Mrs. Dean Delehant and Mrs. Margaret Bennett of Council Bluffs; a son, Edward Joseph; and two daughters, JoAnne and Patricia Lou, who are living with their mother, who has remarried, in Tacoma, Wash.

Six of the Honda Knot caskets will life in state in the rotunda of San Francisco’s city hall Saturday morning, representing the army, navy, coast guard, marine corps, air force and service-attached civilians. Within three days, with greatest reverence, all 3,028 caskets will be sent to final resting places. With each will go a guard of honor.

Source: The Council Bluffs Nonpareil, Council Bluffs, Iowa, Friday, October 10, 1947, Page 1

EDITORIAL

The bodies of the men who gave their lives to win the second world war, are beginning to come home.

The first of the local bodies to arrive in the United States will be that of Rex Knapp, who died off the Solomon islands in 1942, is expected to arrive in Council Bluffs soon and will be given due honors by the Veterans of Foreign Wars post here.

But the people of Council Bluffs can give this man who gave his life for his country no greater honor than to remember the cause for which he fought and to join with others in their best efforts to see that no other war such as the one which has occupied our minds so recently can ever occur again, if it is within the power of man to stop it.

Lincoln told the people of Gettysburg: “The world will little not nor long remember what we say here; it can never forget what they did here.”

Just so, it makes little difference what we say of Rex Knapp. But the world will never forget what he and thousands of others did to preserve the form of living which they considered the best of all.

In the words of Lincoln, “it is for us” to dedicated ourselves to the completion of the task before us and make sure that Rex Knapp and his buddies will not have died in vain.

Source: The Council Bluffs Nonpareil, Council Bluffs, Iowa, Saturday, October 11, 1947, Page 4

Rites at Defiance for Rex J. Knapp

Military rites will be held Saturday at 2 p.m. at the Defiance cemetery for Rexford J. Knapp, water tender 1/c, son of Mr. and Mrs. E. J. Knapp of Council Bluffs, who was killed Nov. 30, 1942, aboard the cruiser Minneapolis off the Solomon Islands.

A native of Manilla and a 1932 graduate of Harlan high school, Knapp had served in the navy nine years at the time of his death. Surviving are the parents; his widow and three children, now living in Tacoma, Wash.; two brothers, Ray W. Knapp of Council Bluffs and Ned of Harlan; and two sisters, Mrs. Ruth Deichant and Mrs. Margaret Bennett of Council Bluffs.

Schack funeral home of Harlan is in charge of arrangements.

Source: The Council Bluffs Nonpareil, Council Bluffs, Iowa, Friday, November 21, 1947, Page 7