Melford Crisman was a longtime educator who always did what he could to help children, said his friend, Mark Fisher.
“He was very much kind and a gentleman,” he said. “Many former students came to his funeral. He made an impression on many people, even years ago.”
Melford Crisman, 85, of Valparaiso, died Jan. 23. He graduated from Valparaiso High School, attended Valparaiso University and earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Ball State University.
He spent his career with the Valparaiso school district, serving as a elementary school teacher and principal at several schools. He spent his last 24 years at Thomas Jefferson Elementary School, retiring as principal in 1988. He was involved in numerous professional and community organizations. He was a member of First United Methodist Church and a World War II Navy veteran.
Crisman entered the Navy after high school, and after a few months of service World War II ended. He served in the reserves through the Korean War.
“He was proud of his military service,” Fisher said.
Crisman enjoyed spending time in Florida and was an avid gardener.
Fisher said his friend was well respected by everyone who knew him.
“He was a gentle man and a gentleman,” he said. “He cared deeply for people. He was genuinely concerned about his fellow man, and did what he could to help them.”