BLOOMINGTON -- Students at Brigham Elementary School buzzed with
excitement as they looked at a suit of armor.
Then it moved.
Karl Kindt III, a real knight in shining
armor, flipped up his helmet to squeals from the
children and talked to them about chivalry and
He told stories with lessons, let the
children touch his armor, and even halved a
watermelon with his sword during his visit
Tuesday. He will bring his presentation to
Hudson Elementary School today.
"He's cool," said fourth-grader Nicholas
Baize. "He told us you should be brave and think
about other people."
Kindt, whose 82-pound suit of armor weighs
more than many of the 360 children listening to
him, said a professional armorer in Idaho
measured him in 256 places for his custom-made
"Armor does rust," Kindt said. Although the
secret to making the oil used in Medieval times
has been forgotten, WD-40 oil of today works
fine, he said.
In explaining the crest on his shield, the
59-year-old St. Louis man said the blue and
white stripes honor his father because such
stripes represent soldiers. Fleurs-de-lis
represent the cities where mayors have dubbed
him a knight, including his hometown.
His father, Karl Kindt II, was a gunner in
World War II whose wife was expecting a child
when he went off to war. "That unborn child was
me," said Kindt.
His father was killed in the service, but he
had given a friend money to buy his wife red
roses and a letter for his unborn child.
Letter was inspiring
When he was old enough, Kindt read the
letter. His father said it was a great honor to
give his life for others and encouraged his son
to live a life of chivalry.
"That letter inspired me to do what I do
today," Kindt said.
"The freedom that we have today is not free,"
he said. It comes on the shoulders of Kindt's
father and others like him, he said.
His shield also contains a cross, signifying
knighthood's Christian roots.
Kindt is training two squires, one 17 years
old and one 9 years old, to be future knights.
He said he is one of six knights in the United
Among the stories he told was one of a little
boy and a watermelon. A rolling watermelon
knocked the boy over, pushing his face into the
mud. The angry boy then wasted most of his life
traveling through the land, chopping up
"Often when we get mad we do bad things," he
He also told his audience that people can get
extra strength when they get mad, but they
should use that strength for good.
"If you believe in God, ask him what to do
with your mad strength," he said. God might say,
" 'Clean your room,'" he said.
Students laughed when he demonstrated how
quickly a room could be cleaned with "mad
First-grade teacher Tracey Renn, the student
council sponsor who helped arrange his visit,
said she is going to use some of the knight's
phrases in the classroom to help children
remember lessons about character.
Kindt, who said portraying a knight is his
full-time job, also dresses in his armor and
rides a horse while working as a security guard
in parks. He appears at schools, libraries and
other events almost daily.