Christie Crafton’s sister, Candy Meyer, provided this memorial tribute for our newsletter in 2004.
Mother of three, wife, kindergarten teacher, Sunday School teacher, small-business owner, wedding singer…Christie Crafton had it all! Not only did she have a life that was full and meaningful, Christie had the spirit of Christianity planted firmly in everything she did. I remember she used to have little snippets of Bible verses tucked everywhere in her home. Over the kitchen sink, taped on the bathroom mirror, magnetized to the front of the fridge, these little spiritual reminders gently spoke of Christie’s purpose in living…always guiding herself and her family to be the best they could be.
Christie’s spirit was so infectious! She had a pure joy of living that rubbed off on anyone at any time. She could dress up as a clown to surprise you at school (as she did on my 40th birthday!), then end up leading the whole cafeteria in a Happy Birthday song! Once she dressed up as a huge bumblebee and dressed Crisdale, her little daughter, as a baby bumblebee. They even had matching, bobbing antennae on their heads as they marched down the halls at New Washington High School to surprise the principal (Dale)! She was also constantly dressing up her two little boys, Trevor and Van, in funny costumes, or hats, or capes to help them pretend they were really Superman! Her eyes were always full of mischief, and her laugh was full of delight.
Christie had a beautiful singing voice that she professionally developed later in life unbeknownst to her family. Yes, she had always sung in the church choir growing up, but didn’t let her true talents be heard until much later. The first time she sang pubicly at Scottsburg was at the First Baptist Church, her old church, at Easter time. We did not know that she had been studying under a voice coach, so we were not prepared for the hushed response as she sang a song that Mary would have sung to her dying son, Jesus. There were not too many dry eyes in the sanctuary that day, nor anyone prouder than her family!
From the get-go, I believe Christie was a teacher. We were always playing school when we were growing up…and then once grown up, she always enjoyed working with small children. After a career change and a gentle push from her husband, Christie went back to college for her lifelong dream…to become a teacher. Christie started her teaching career in Charlestown, then later moved to Hanover, to teach kindergarten at Southwestern Elementary School for several years. There the ever-vibrant, dedicated-for-life teacher made an indelible mark on the lives of many young students. She continued teaching, spirit-filled, day after day right through chemotherapy, right through the grips of cancer, until the day when her principal and her sister talked her into going home for good to rest.
Christie Crawford Crafton’s memorial scholarship for the students of Scottsburg High School was started soon after she passed away at the age of 42. It carries the memories, the struggles, the dreams of becoming a dynamic teacher for other aspiring young educators. Christie would be thrilled to know that her legacy through the Scott County Community Foundation is to challenge and support high school seniors who dream of one day becoming a dynamic teacher, too.