Frank Kennedy Knight was born February 1, 1948, in Brooklyn, NY. A bright and ambitious student, he graduated from high school at the age of 16 and attended City College of New York on full scholarship, graduating with a BA cum laude in history in 1968. That year he entered the School of Law at Washington University in St. Louis, MO, where he excelled in topics pertaining to civil liberties.
While at law school Knight met Judith Veeder, then a nursing student. They were wed in 1971. That year Knight obtained his law degree and accepted a position with the Baxter County District Attorney's office The couple settled in Mountain Home, Arkansas, where Knight is currently deputy district attorney. He is considered by many to be an ideal candidate for district judge.
A deeply religious man, Knight is involved in many community activities as an active member of the Church of Christ the Avenger. He has served on the Mountain Home Parent-Teacher Association and is currently a member of the school board. His hobbies include fishing, chess, and raising his only child, daughter Purity, born in 1976.
Judith Veeder Knight (born Judith Ann Veeder) was born in St. Louis, MO, on April 21, 1950. She attended local schools and won a scholarship to Washington University in 1967. At Washington University she studied zoology with a minor in psychology, with plans to attend the university's nursing program upon graduation.
While an undergraduate Judith met Frank Knight, then a student at the university's law school, and upon completion of her degree in the spring of 1971 the couple were married. They moved to Mountain Home, Arkansas, where he pursued a career with the local district attorney's office. Judith gave birth to the couple's only child, Purity Marie, in September of 1976.
Judith is a devoted wife and mother and participates in many community activities. With her husband she is an active member in the Church of Christ the Avenger, and acts as the congregation's Sunday school coordinator. She is a member of the Soroptimist's club and volunteers for the SPCA. She enjoys swimming and cooking, and her needlework creations have won prizes at the Arkansas State Fair.
Purity Marie Knight (AKA Ariadne P. Knight) was born October 11, 1976, in Mountain Home, Arkansas. An academically gifted child, Purity also showed prodigious vocal talent from the age of eight. Until she attended high school Purity received voice lessons from Maddy Frye, whose past pupils include country music ingenue LeAnne Rimes, and appeared in numerous recitals.
Born into a deeply religious family, Purity spent her childhood as a devout Christian. Aside from the church choir, in which she became a soloist at the age of twelve, as a teenager Purity also volunteered to help teach Sunday School and participate in the local Christmas food drive.
Purity excelled academically at high school, especially in math and science, and in the fall of 1995 matriculated at Reed College in Portland, Ore., on full scholarship. Despite initially planning to pursue studies in the sciences, Purity became increasingly interested in philosophy and the origins of religion, and elected to spend the summer of 1996 in a kibbutz in Israel. She was declared missing when she failed to return to Reed for registration; authorities currently believe she has returned to the United States and changed her name.
Purity's father, Frank Knight, is deputy district attorney of Baxter County, Arkansas. Her mother, Judith Knight, is a homemaker. Purity had one sister, Valerie Vilson, whose murder in 1995 is still unsolved.