Woodbury County

Lt. Melvin Eugene McKnight

Will Written by Sioux Cityan on Field of Battle Arrives in City

Penned 18 Months Ago by Lieutenant in the Philippines

Written “on the field of battle” before the fall of Bataan, Philippine Islands, the last will and testament of Lieut. Melvin Eugene McKnight of Sioux City Tuesday reached the court clerk’s files more than 18 months after he had penned his bequest. While a prisoner of the Japs he died, May 21.

Sealed perhaps in the secrecy of war and the memory of three soldiers may be incidents of valor, much fighting and long suffering which might have followed the witnessing of Lieut. McKnight’s signature to his last will. His witnesses were Harland F. Rosseau, 514 N.B.E, De Cere, Wis.; Thomas W. Patrick, Jr. 166 York Street, Chester, S.C.; and Eugene B. Shevlin, 18 Sands Street, Cortland, N.Y. who also signed in ink on the thin parchment, January 21, 1942.

In the will, Lieut. McKnight presented to his mother, Mrs. Lillian Anderson McKnight, 1903 ½ S. Patterson Street, his entire estate. She learned of his death May 21. He had fought the Japs during the battle of Manila and in defense of Bataan and was among thousands of soldiers captured by the enemy when Bataan fell.

Source: The Sioux City Journal, June 9, 1943


These Iowans, like those pictured here on previous Sundays, have given their lives for their country. They are men who have died in actual combat or in prison camps. The fourth line under each name designates the theatre of war in which they were serving. Other pictures will be published later.

Source: The DesMoines Register, Sunday, February 13, 1944  (photo included)