Karl M. Kindt, Jr. was killed in World War II in some of the
bitterest fighting against Nazi Germany on German soil. He was a
machine gunner who was the target of many Nazi shells and bullets
even as he fought to free those in the concentration camps. He
was only twenty-one years old when he was killed on April 12,
1945--just fifty years ago. Before he went to war to defend our
country and to rescue other countries from the evil forces
enslaving most of Europe and other parts of the world, he decided
to get married. On his honeymoon with my mother, I was conceived.
Several months later, while he was at camp awaiting the boat that
would take him to the front lines, my mother wrote and told him
she was with child. Before he left our shores, he arranged to
have delivered, on the day I was delivered, a dozen red roses and
a letter addressed to me. This letter has had a big impact on my
life, for in it he tells me that if he does not return from these
battles, that he counts it as a great honor to give his life for
the liberty of my mother, myself, and others and most importantly that he and my
mother prayed for me unto God for my nuture and protection.
That letter from my father was given to me when I was a young boy. I have read it over and over again. I was given his purple heart, his other medals and a picture of this cross on his grave in France. He is buried near the German border in a town called St. Avold.
My step-father John Prescott
had been a Marine in World War II. He and my mother taught me to
respect the memory of my natural father. I thought of my father
as a knight in shining armor who had, like the knights of old,
fought a dragon of evil to defend my mother and myself and lost
his life in the conflict. His words to me in this letter were
that he had prayed to God for me and my life and was entrusting
God with my protection and well being and my nurture.
As I grew to adulthood, I became convinced that God heard my Father's prayers and has protected me many times from many different dangers and has nurtured me by granting to me a saving faith. I framed his letter to me and the wedding picture of my mom and father and have placed it on my wall in my office to remind myself every day that I owe my life to this young knight and to his prayers to the King of Kings, Jesus Christ, the Prince of our Peace. My young father firmly believed Jesus was his King and he fought the evil of his day for me and my mother and our world in the name of his Lord. Like a crusading knight he marched off to war, his bayonet his sword, his helmet his armor, his heart a knightly heart turned toward the right and a righteous cause. In the small pocket Bible he had with him on the day he was killed there is circled a poem in a poetry section of that Bible that goes this way "I live for those who love me...for the cause that lacks assistance, for the wrong that needs resistance and the good that I can do." My father lived and died out of love for the Lord Jesus Christ and he prayed I would do the same.
Ever since I was a young boy, I wanted to know about the battles my father had fought and how he was killed. I wanted to visit the places where he fought those battles and where he actually spilled his blood in the defense of liberty and justice, but no one in my family knew any of this. So I started a search for this information--a search for those who fought with my father on those final days of World War II. He was in the Third Battalion of the Seventh Army--the Fifteenth division. I knew all of this and I found from books where this battalion had fought in March and April of 1945 when my father was on the front lines. But this battalion was spread out over many, many miles of German soil and it was not possible to determine exactly where my father was on any given day or in any given place from the books.
This past year I found, through the information highway a group of men who were actually in the Third Battalion and through this group, I found one man who knew my father before they both went to the front lines and who was fighting alongside him on the day my father was killed. Mr. William Wayne of Seneca, New York told me the details I needed to actually go and visit the places where my father fought and died for us.
April 1995 was fast approaching and I wanted to make my trip to these places before the fiftieth anniversary of his death. I made arrangements to take my vacation in late March and early April of 1995 so that I could actually be in the towns and villages of Germany on the precise days my father fought in those places fifty years before. The trip was quite meaningful to me. I stood on the roads my father marched on and viewed the scenery his youthful eyes beheld. I came to the exact place where the artillery shell had killed my father and will never need the photograph I took of that place to remember it for it is emblazoned on my heart. From this place of his death, I then traveled 500 miles to St. Avold, France where my father's body was buried. Placing roses on his grave, I prayed to our Father in Heaven to thank Him for having had such a courageous and loving earthly father and to inspire me to live henceforth a renewed and dedicated life to my King and Lord Jesus Christ.
Upon returning home, I pondered the idea of becoming a knight. One evening, while thinking and praying about my life, I determined that if God could use me as a knight I would dedicate the rest of my life as a knight who would, by the grace of God, be a chivalrous man and serve the cause of righteousness in the name and power of Jesus Christ my King--just as my own father had done in his generation.
The idea of actually having armor made for myself for this purpose also came to me. The armor has proved to be expensive but useful in drawing attention to the need in our society for men who are dedicated to the cause of truth, justice, to their wives and to the King of all Kings who loves us all.
I contracted with Christian Fletcher, an armorer in Idaho, to make the armor for me. I have now worn the armor in service to thousands of lords and ladies, Cub Scouts, schools, churches, weddings, and store promotionals; walking in the March of Dimes; to the Crippled Children's Hospital; to the Juvenile Detention Center--everywhere taking the message of chivalry and the true stories of knights of old and of our own age.