William John "Pete" Knight (November 18, 1929 – May 7, 2004), (Col, USAF), was an American aeronautical engineer, politician, Vietnam War combat pilot, test pilot, and astronaut in the X-20 Dyna-Soar and North American X-15 programs. Knight holds the world's speed record for flight in a winged, powered aircraft.
Born in Noblesville, Hamilton, Indiana, USA
Joined the US Air Force
Son Peter Knight is born
Married Helena Albina Stone (Laroche) on 07 Jun 1958 in Morrisville, Lamoille, Vermont, USA. Aeronautical Engineering, Air Force Institute of Technology. Test pilot at Edwards AFB.
X-15 Flight 184 suffered total electrical system failure, landed safely, received the Distinguished Flying Cross. Set the world’s speed record of Mach 6.72 on X-15 flight 188 on 03 Oct 1967. The seventh X-15 pilot to exceed 50 miles (80467 m) in altitude on X-15 flight 190 on 17 Oct 1967, thus qualifying him to be an Astronaut.
Distinguished Flying Cross
Flew 253 combat missions over Southeast Asia
Wife Helena died
Retired from the U.S. Air Force as Colonel. During his Air Force career, he was awarded the Legion of Merit and the Air Medal.
Legion of Merit
Elected to city council of Palmdale, California
Elected as Mayor of Palmdale, California
Elected to the California State Assembly, 36th District
Elected to the California State Senate, 17th District
Died in Duarte, Los Angeles, California, USA
↑ "Vermont, Marriage Records, 1909-2008," Ancestry.com.
"United States Social Security Death Index," database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:V35J-628 : 19 May 2014), William J Knight, 07 May 2004; citing U.S. Social Security Administration, Death Master File, database (Alexandria, Virginia: National Technical Information Service, ongoing).
"United States Census, 1930," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:XQ1P-ZDJ : accessed 20 January 2017), Billy J Knight in household of William T Knight, Pontiac, Oakland, Michigan, United States; citing enumeration district (ED) ED 81, sheet 4A, line 45, family 74, NARA microfilm publication T626 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 2002), roll 1018; FHL microfilm 2,340,753.
"United States Census, 1940," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:KWRH-ZCY : accessed 20 January 2017), Billy Knight in household of William Knight, Ward 33, Cleveland City, Cleveland City, Cuyahoga, Ohio, United States; citing enumeration district (ED) 92-865, sheet 6B, line 55, family 126, Sixteenth Census of the United States, 1940, NARA digital publication T627. Records of the Bureau of the Census, 1790 - 2007, RG 29. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 2012, roll 3238.