By A. G. Russell
As a veteran, 1953 –1956, the son of a man who spent over 33 years on active duty, and part of a family who has had family members in every war this nation has fought, I was appalled by the treatment of our soldiers returning from Vietnam. The behavior of the American “left” scarred me for life. This has resulted in our program “The War on Troop Boredom” which has sent over 20,000 care packages to units in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The “War on Troop Boredom” program led to Goldie and I being invited to sit on a board for the Veterans Resource and Information Center at the University of Arkansas. One thing that the VRIC did not have is an Emergency Fund for the Veteran Students at the UofA who have sudden financial problems. To solve this problem Goldie and I decided to design and produce a unique pocketknife and donate over one half of the proceeds from the sale of that knife to develop this much needed fund.
The fund will be administered by the University and will be used to help veteran students to continue their studies by providing funds for emergencies such as unexpected trips to the doctor for a child, car problems, etc., where there is not another source for those funds.
This new knife design is based on the most popular knife I have ever designed, the K-93 “one hand knife.” I have reduced the handle from four inches in length to three inches. As in the original, the handles are molded from fiberglass re-enforced nylon. The blade is much copied “General Purpose” blade and the steel is the same 8Cr13MoV at 57-58 Rc. that we use in our regular catalog knives selling from $45 to $95. This unique knife has the Arkansas cardinal red colored handle with the center of the Arkansas Flag inlaid in the front side of the handle. It also has the words “Arkansas Veteran” deeply etched on the obverse side of the blade.
This knife was designed with simplicity and strength in mind. Not large at all, it measures just 3″ closed. The drop point blade measures just under 2-1/2″ with an oval hole that allows you to easily flip the blade open with one hand. A little practice lets you open the knife with authority and speed. Mid-lock. No pocket clip.