ELLSWORTH – Wm. “Buzz” Knight passed away Feb. 24, 2017, at the VA Medical Center at Togus after a brief period of declining health. He was born July 28, 1942, in Ellsworth, the son of William B. and Ruth M. (Austin) Knight.
He was a graduate of Ellsworth High School, Class of 1960. Buzz graduated from the University of Maine in 1964 with a degree in political science. He remained an avid fan of the Maine Black Bears men’s hockey team throughout his life. He joined the Marine Corps in November of 1966, graduating from Officer Candidate School in March of 1967. He went on to flight school and then helicopter school before serving as a medevac pilot in Vietnam throughout 1968. It was in Vietnam that Buzz was awarded the Silver Star for conspicuous gallantry, stemming from an incident where he evacuated an entire reconnaissance patrol of Marines whose position was about to be overrun, overloading his helicopter in the process, but getting everyone to safety. Upon his return to the United States, Buzz became a flight instructor for the Marines in Meridian, Miss. He was honored to be chosen as flight instructor of the year (1970) for the entire Marine Corps. In 1972, Buzz, now a captain, extended his commitment to the Marine Corps to become a career officer. While attending advanced training at Quantico Marine Base in Virginia, he was struck by a car while jogging, suffering injuries that would end his military service. After his initial recovery, he returned to his parents’ home on the Shore Road, where his parents continued his care. It was during this period that Buzz and his father traveled extensively in Downeast Maine and the Canadian Maritimes, enjoying many adventures together. Eventually, the demands of Buzz’s care became too much for his parents, and he became a resident of the nursing home care unit at the VA Medical Center at Togus. Buzz will be remembered for his bravery, his sense of humor, and his strong love for his family.
He was predeceased by his parents and his sister Joan (Knight) Day. He is survived by a niece, Kelly Bliss of Dunedin, Fla., and a nephew, William Day of Gilford, N.H., and their respective families.
The family wishes to thank the staff at the VA Medical Center for the years of loving care they gave to Buzz.
In lieu of flowers, the family asks you to consider a gift to the Maine VA Medical Center, c/o Marine Corps League, 1 VA Center, Augusta, ME 04330, or the Ellsworth Public Library, 20 State St., Ellsworth, ME 04605.
Arrangements by Jordan-Fernald, 113 Franklin St., Ellsworth. Burial will be at the Woodbine Cemetery in Ellsworth in the spring.
Condolences may be expressed at www.jordanfernald.com.