Clylas Elwood Knight Jr., 93, an executive with Westinghouse Electric Corp. whose work took him to the Middle East, died Wednesday, Aug. 21, of a stroke at Freedom Village, a West Brandywine senior facility where he had lived for the last two decades.
“Tex,” as he was known, was a mechanical engineer. He spent his entire career at Westinghouse as a leader of the company’s power generation and industrial groups. He held multiple patents and was recognized by the firm for system and component designs.
In the early 1980s, there was an oil boom in Saudi Arabia. Westinghouse formed a joint venture with the country called ISCOSA, Industrial Services Co. of Saudi Arabia. From 1977 to 1981, Mr. Knight traveled back and forth between the United States and Saudi Arabia as the project’s quality control manager. The culmination of Mr. Knight’s career came in 1981, when he was named ISCOSA’s managing director.
He moved to Dammam with his wife, Scottie Lee Wilson. The couple used their home as a base to travel the world. They went to Thailand, France, England, Hong Kong, Australia, India, the Philippines, Russia, Germany, Switzerland, New Zealand, and Greece. “Wanderlust remained a part of their lives together,” said the couple’s son John D. Knight.
The couple returned to the United States in 1986, and Mr. Knight retired.
Born to Exie Akens and Clylas Elwood Knight Sr. on a farm outside Hawley, Texas, Mr. Knight graduated from Amarillo High School in 1942. At age 18, he applied to become a commissioned Navy officer and served for three years in the South Pacific during World War II aboard the oil tanker USS Quiros (IX-140).
After his military service, Mr. Knight earned a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Texas and an M.B.A. in finance at Widener University, where he later taught advanced engineering.
He and his wife settled in the Media community of Park Ridge, where they raised three children. In 2010, he published a memoir called Things I Remember. In it, he wrote: “Family is the basis of your being.”
A man of conservative opinions, he took every opportunity that presented itself to tell liberals that he disagreed with their views, his daughter, Terry DiUbaldi, said. “He was a character,” she said.
A second pillar of his life was his church, the First Baptist Church of Media. Over 62 years, he served as a trustee and provided financial advice. “He immensely enjoyed the fellowship of his faith community,” his son said.
In 1999, he and his wife moved to Freedom Village. He was an early chairman of the facility’s finance committee and founded the Black Hatters men’s social club. His wife died in 2007. Afterward, he became friends with Margaret Schafer, another Freedom Village resident.
Besides son John and daughter Terry, he is survived by another son, James C.; five grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.
A viewing starting at 10 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 24, will be followed by an 11 a.m. funeral at the First Baptist Church of Media, 3 E. Third St., Media, Pa. 19063. Interment will be in the Media Cemetery.