EL DORADO, Kan. (KSNW) – Ramon Criss, age 82, will be remembered for his generous and hard-working spirit. He gave generous financial donations to places like the El Dorado YMCA and scholarships to Butler Community College.
“I think the things he’s most proud of are those things nobody knows about,” Criss’s son, Michael Criss said.
Criss’s body was recovered from the Walnut River near El Dorado lake this weekend after someone farming in the area reported seeing a man on a tractor headed toward the low water bridge near the river. Criss’s tractor was found first, then articles of his clothing, then his body.
His family speculates he may have been preparing the low water bridge area for an upcoming running event, the Spencer, Wernli and Wilson Storm the Dam Trail races, which Criss loaned some of his property to.
“That’s why he was mowing the fringe of the trail. That’s why he sees this big old log jam, the flotsam and the debris at the low water bridge and he said, ‘that’s gotta go,’ and that’s what he was doing,” Michael Criss said.
Criss leaves behind a loving family, thankful neighbors and a community that was proud to know him.
“He loved growing community and he loved growing people,” Michael Criss said.
An autopsy is pending.