Born in Fargo, North Dakota, on July 17, 1932, Harold “Kris”Krislock passed away on January 10, 2021.Kris’ Father, Kenneth and his Mother, Esther moved the family to Bozeman, Montana, early in his life where he spent his formative years.
Kris attended Gallatin County High School and enjoyed sports (Football, Basketball and Baseball), hunting and cars. After High School, Kris was signed by the Brooklyn Dodgers as a hard-throwing left-handed pitcher with an outstanding curveball. Unfortunately, arm injuries plagued him and he was forced to give up his career in baseball. After returning to Montana, Kris decided to further his education at Western Washington School of Education (now Western Washington University). He received his Bachelor’s Degree in History and met one of his lifelong friends, Ken Moffett.
Kris and Ken moved to California together in 1957 after graduation. The two lived out of their cars at Inglewood Park and dressed for job interviews in bathrooms as they tried to establish themselves in Southern California as teachers. Kris began his teaching career in the Inglewood Unified School District at Monroe Junior High School teaching Social Studies and would remain in the district for the majority of his career. It was at this time that Kris would meet another of his lifelong friends, Frank Spittle, who would go on to teach Math in the District as well.
While getting his Master’s Degree at The University of Southern California in 1963, Kris met Kondelia “Konnie” Wells, whom he would marry, just less than two weeks after being introduced. Kris and Konnie spent their first year’s together teaching at Harvey Barracks/Kitzingen Army Base in Germany contracted by the Department of Defense. It was at that time their Daughter Zoe was born in 1964. In 1966, the couple returned to the United States and resided in Carson, California. Kris resumed teaching History at Inglewood High School and in 1970, their son Zak was born. While at Inglewood High School, Kris quickly became one of the most popular teachers on campus. His ability to teach through storytelling was his greatest strength and endeared him to his students. Kris also developed the Work Experience Program for students in the district, which was one of his brightest accomplishments.
Both Kris and Konnie had a knack for developing extended relationships with their students and families. It was during this time in 1972, they purchased a house in Redondo Beach on Fisk Lane. The house had been a World War II Officer’s Club and Kris spent much of his free time restoring and improving the house. That included personally making the stained glass windows that decorated the front door and installing the hedge that encompassed the front lawn area.
Many nights they hosted dinners and parties and it became something they were both very fond of. Many of his students remained close friends after graduating and always attributed their future success to his mentoring and friendship. Kris’ love for travel was a constant throughout his life. Numerous family vacations with the Moffett and Spittle families occurred in the summer when the teachers were on break. Exploring the American West while camping was one of the favorite past times of the group.
In the summer of 1976, the Krislock family packed up their VW bus and toured the Nation during its Bicentennial visiting 32 states and spending July Fourth on the Washington D.C. Mall with fireworks. In 1993, Kris retired from teaching, enabling him to continue his love of travel. He visited India, Egypt, Jordan, Israel, Russia, Costa Rica, China, Belgium and The Netherlands. He was either accompanied by Frank Spittle or visited Zoe during these trips.
In the 1980s, Kris became an avid runner and it was a part of his life style. He became very adept, completing the San Diego, Long Beach and Boston Marathons, just to name a few of the 50 in which he ran. He routinely ran over 100 miles each week and in 1989 he participated in the Western States 100-mile race.
Montana was always close to Kris’ heart and he returned there to live after retiring. He purchased a house in Bozeman where he could be close to his sister Julie, her husband Bill Gibson and his nieces Cari, Cami and Casey and their families. During this time, he expanded another passion of
his, baseball card collecting, opening a store in Bozeman to buy and sell cards and operating it for almost 3 years. Kris also met Dean and Anne Halsey in Bozeman at this time who remained his close friends. During this period, he befriended Putter, his adoring Shih Tzu. Kris returned to live in California in 2014 to be close to his kids and his friends.
He spent the remainder of his years there, meeting new people and visiting with his family and friends. Kris spent his life learning and teaching history and his travels throughout the World enlarged his passion. His charismatic personality endeared him to everyone he knew and this was his favorite quality. He was loved and will be missed by many.