Local Knife Goes To War

 

 

            Local resident John D. Merritt, USMC with the Kinfolks knife that his parents purchased at a hardware store and mailed to him.  He kept this strapped to his leg in his Grumman Torpedo Bomber Fighter that he flew in out of Bouganville in the Pacific during WW2.   Merritt was a gunner in the rear facing gun turret of the TBF.     Pappy Boyington was among those who flew cover for his missions in a fighter plane.  John wanted the knife handy incase the plane went down so that he could cut himself loose if need be, and swim to safety.  John donated this to the museum along with his issue knife and a machete that he also kept handy incase he had to "swim for it" and live for a time on some remote island.  John was a champion swimmer and a semi-pro running back who played for the Silver Creek Red Raiders prior to WW2.