• Last modified 383 days ago (June 28, 2018)


10-year-old is advocate for Kapaun

Staff writer

When his fourth grade class at Centre Elementary was assigned the task of choosing a historical character to portray on Kansas History Day, Elijah Klenda of rural Lincolnville jumped at the chance to feature his beloved Chaplain Emil Kapaun.

To learn more about Kapaun, he joined a tour led by Harriet Bina and read two books she suggested.

When it came time for the presentation, Bina gave him a helmet liner, T-shirt, and dog tags to wear. His mother found green pants. After Bina gave him a canteen, he was ready to go.

Bina accepted Elijah’s invitation to come to his presentation. He gave a four-minute talk about Kapaun’s life, from his birth at Pilsen to his death in a North Korean prisoner-of-war camp.

All of this is gratifying to Bina.

“Father Kapaun is from our area, and I like to talk about him,” Elijah said. “I just want him to become a saint. He was a good person and helped so many people.”

“Elijah’s interest in Father Kapaun is what we are trying to build in all the school children who come and take the tour,” she said.

Last modified June 28, 2018