He was the son of Sam Wright Knox (32 in 1901, Bank Clerk) and Lacy Trace Knox. In 1901, the family were living in house 11, Clifton Street, Belfast. By 1911, Knox Junior was boarding in a school at Ulverton Road, Dalkey, Co. Dublin.
In 1901 and 1911, there is an elderly Robert Kyle Knox (63 in 1901 and recorded as a Retired Bank Director) living in 1 College Gardens, Belfast. R K Knox (Senior) is a former Chairman of Northern Bank.
On 15th October 1914, Knox joined Northern Bank at Head Office.
In the same month he volunteered and enlisted into the 10th Bn. Royal Irish Fusiliers as a Private. Knox served with the British Expeditionary Force. Following promotions through the ranks, he was gazetted as a 2nd Lieutenant, Royal Irish Rifles. He saw action at the Somme 1916, Cambrai 1917, St. Quentin 1918 and Ypres 1918. On 28th March 1918, he was injured and suffered a gunshot wound to his left leg. He narrowly escaped being taken prisoner in the late fighting.
The Belfast News Letter of 18th January 1918 reports:
The Belfast News Letter of 4th April 1918 reports:
The Belfast News Letter of 10th July 1918 reports:
Demobilisation came in February 1919. He was awarded the Military Cross (MC), the 1914/15 Star, the British Victory Medal and the British War Medal.
Following demobilisation, Knox rejoined the Northern Bank at Lisburn on 24th March 1919 as a ‘junior’.
A transfer in May 1919 took him to Ball’s Branch until 11th January 1922 when he resigned.
It is probable that he volunteered for further service at the start of WWII as the London Gazette records a 2nd Lieutenant R K Knox MC (with Service Number 146469) serving with the Intelligence Corps in 1940. In 1943, he was recorded as a Major (Temporary Lieutenant Colonel).
He was also awarded the OBE at some time between 1943 and 1946.
On 17th October 1946, Knox was conferred with the USA military decoration, ‘Legion of Merit, Degree of Officer’ in recognition of distinguished services in the cause of the Allies. The Legion of Merit is awarded for exceptionally meritorious conduct in the performance of outstanding services and achievements.