John C. Kite died on March 10th, 2023 at his Vigo County residence, Last Camp. He was born January 1, 1939 in Fairview Park, Indiana to Doris Snowberry Kite and Conrad Kite.
He attended Fairview Grade School and was a graduate of Clinton High School with the class of 1955. He served on active duty with the United States Navy from 1957 to 1959, and was on duty at the Beirut, Lebanon incursion in 1958 aboard the U.S.S. William C. Lawe (DD763). He was released from active duty in August, 1959 and was honorably discharged in 1962, holding the rank of Yeoman Second Class.
After return to civilian life, he attended Indiana State University from which he received a B.S. degree in 1963. He was later a student at Indiana University School of Law, Indianapolis, where he was awarded his J.D. degree in 1969. He was a graduate of the Indiana Judicial College.
During his law studies he was employed as a teacher, social caseworker, Indiana State Parole Officer, correctional counselor, and U.S. Probation Officer.
Kite was admitted to practice in the courts of Indiana and the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana in November, 1969. He began the private practice of law in Terre Haute in 1970, and continued in private practice until 1981 when became Judge of Vigo County Court, Division Four. He served as judge until 1991. He then resumed private practice of law, and also began a practice in alternative dispute resolution as a mediator and arbitrator. He also served as an adjunct professor at Indiana State University and Saint-Mary-of-the- Woods College, and conducted numerous mediation trainings and presentations.
At various times he was a member, director, or officer of these organizations: Indiana State Teachers Association, National Education Association, American Bar Association, Indiana State Bar Association, Terre Haute Bar Association, Indiana Judicial Conference, Indiana Judges Association, Indiana Association of Mediators, American Civil Liberties Union, Eugene V. Debs Foundation, Audubon Society, Izzak Walton League, and the Dispute Resolution Center of the Wabash Valley, among others.
In the lae 1990s he retired to his farm in Otter Creek Township where he lived a simple, solitary, and contemplative life of study and meditation. He was an advocate and activist for political, social, and economic justice, a student of the arts and philosophy, and a protector of nature and the environment. His experiences with the military, the penal system, the adversarial American system of justice, and coercive law enforcement informed his conclusions that force and violence are destructive agents that devalue the human experience.
Accordingly, he directed his efforts toward the implementation of peaceful, non-violent, and collaborative methods of conflict resolution, and the active pursuit of peace among all peoples.
Among his survivors are his beloved companion, Jackie McCracken, OSF; daughter, Sarah Kite Cordano and her son, Joseph; son, Benjamin and companion, Jeanne Rewa; brother, Michael Kite and his sons, David and Jonathan; brother, Leonard Kite and his son, Jason; brother, Mark Kite and his son, Conrad and daughter, Camille; and sister, Mary Kite and her son, Nathan Blanchard.
Interment and graveside services were performed at Hebrew Orthodox Cemetery in Mishawaka. Friends and family may convey their private memorials and condolences by arrangement. Memorial contributions may be made to the Eugene V. Debs Foundation, the American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana Foundation, or a charity of the donor’s choice.
To send condolences to the family, please visit www.McGannHay.com.