#VeteranOfTheDay Navy Veteran Willard Knockum Jr


Today’s #VeteranOfTheDay is Navy Veteran Willard Knockum Jr. Willard served from 1964 to 1971 during the Vietnam War.

Willard joined the Navy in 1964. He was trained in counterinsurgency and survival surveillance reconnaissance and weapons at the Marine Base Camp in Pendleton, California. He became a Boatswain Mate, a role that fulfills a variety of tasks such as lookout duty, training and directing maintenance duties, damage control, operating and maintaining equipment and more. Willard also participated in North Atlantic Treaty Organization and anti-submarine warfare exercises.

Willard served on the destroyer USS Fox 779 before he deployed to Vietnam in 1969 during the Vietnam War where he served in Saigon and Dong Tam. He was assigned to Military Assistance Command, a group of assault river boats that patrolled hostile waters around the Army Base at Dong Tam. For his service, Willard was awarded the Vietnam Service Medal and the Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal.

Willard now lives in Folsom, Louisiana as a retired United Postal Service mail handler.

Thank you for your service, Willard!

Nominate a Veteran for #VeteranOfTheDay

Do you want to light up the face of a special Veteran? Have you been wondering how to tell your Veteran they are special to you? You’re in luck! VA’s #VeteranOfTheDay social media feature is an opportunity to highlight your Veteran and his/her service.

It’s easy to nominate a Veteran. All it takes is an email to newmedia@va.gov with as much information as you can put together, along with some good photos. Visit our blog post about nominating to learn how to create the best submission.

Graphic By Joanna Specht: Joanna Specht is a student at Black Hawk College with a Major in Visual Communication. 


Nick Pearlman

Nick Pearlman is a junior studying Government and Business Analytics at William and Mary. He is originally from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and is currently a writing and social media intern at the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs.


  1. Marchella Smith    

    Thank you for your service Mr. Knockum!

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