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Knight in shining armor is on quest to return chivalry to place of honor




Knight for hire


The knight from Webster Groves, Sir Karl Kindt III, is available for weddings, parties, schools and other events. He can be contacted at knightforhire.com or 314-961-0987.










Sir Karl Kindt III dons his 82 pounds of armor and presents programs for schools, Scouts and others.






Have armor, will travel.

That is the motto of the St. Louis area's own knight, Sir Karl Kindt III.

He has a full set of armor, an authentic copy of the apparel of a 15th-century knight. The armor cost nearly $5,000 and weighs 82 pounds. He dons it and presents programs on chivalry at schools and for Scout groups and others.

Kindt, 58, of Webster Groves, has a mission: to return chivalry and honor to the conduct of men toward women.

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"We men are a sorry lot in this age," he said. "We have forgotten how to give a lady the respect God wants us to."
His is a romantic story. The inspiration for his quest came to him about eight years ago when he visited his father's grave in St. Avold, France. His father fought and died in World War II before Kindt was born. His father had made arrangements for a letter and a dozen roses to be delivered to his newborn son posthumously. The letter urged Kindt to be a man of honor.

In the cemetery at St. Avold, Kindt saw a statue of King Arthur. The statue made him think of his father and the others who died in World War II as knights fighting for freedom. He wanted to be a knight, too.

He learned that when the United States wrested its freedom from England, the Americans also secured the right to dub knights. Kindt said he had been dubbed a knight by four mayors, a school principal and thousands of children.

His job by day is as a computer information coordinator for the law firm of Lewis Rice & Fingersh. Kindt has been married for 37 years and has two adult sons. He makes about 125 appearances as a knight each year.

One of his recent appearances was at the wedding rehearsal dinner of Rachel Young, 26, and Eric Nobles, also 26, of Affton and Dittmer respectively. The dinner was at C.J. Muggs in Webster Groves.

The groom's mother, Judith Nobles, engaged Kindt for the event.

"I thought a young groom dedicating himself to a woman should hear about honoring a woman, respecting her," she explained. "I thought the knight had a lot to say and would add a lot to the occasion."

Kindt told a centuries-old tale about a knight and his lady who discover that the road to happiness lies not in getting what each wanted but in living for each other.

In his version of the story, Sir Gawain agrees to marry a woman to whom King Arthur has made the promise that she would be married to the most handsome knight of the Round Table. The lady is the ugliest woman in the kingdom. Nevertheless, the good knight marries her. Gawain learns on their wedding night that he can choose whether she will be beautiful by day and ugly by night or beautiful by night and ugly by day.

He would prefer that she be beautiful by night for him. But he chooses that she be beautiful by day to save her from the ridicule of the court. At that choice - for her happiness and not his own - she is transformed into the most beautiful woman in the world day and night.

He also led the bride and groom in a ceremony in which the groom cut a lock of the bride's hair and placed it in a locket, which the groom would carry to remind himself of his pledge to his beloved.

Kindt also found the appearance fortuitous. One of his goals as a knight is to meet Queen Elizabeth. One of the guests, Steve Blundell, is from Bedfordshire, England. Blundell works as a gamekeeper and gardener in Bedfordshire for an English knight. Blundell thinks that when the knight hears of Kindt's work, the English knight will put in a good word with the queen.

Kindt can hope. He has armor and will travel.

Reporter Theresa Tighe:
E-mail: ttighe@post-dispatch.com
Phone: 314-340-8129



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