Christopher Kanelakos

Christopher James Kanelakos, 53, of Arkansas City, passed away Wednesday, Jan. 12, 2022 at South Central Kansas Medical Center. A celebration of life service is at 2 p.m. Monday, Jan. 17 at Shelley Family Funeral Home of Arkansas City. Memorial contributions can be made to The Kanelakos Children Education Fund. Donations can be left in the care of Shelley Family Funeral Home. Donations for funeral expenses can also be made directly to his wife, Julie. Chris was born August 4, 1968 in Arkansas City to Steve J. Kanelakos and Donna R. (Nickle) Graham. As a kid, Chris was rooted in baseball, football and basketball, and participated in many travel teams and Little League. He graduated from Arkansas City High School in 1986 and attended Butler Community College on a football scholarship. He later transferred to Missouri Western for football, then Northwestern Oklahoma State University on a baseball scholarship. Chris was employed over the years with Coca-Cola, Frito Lay, Budweiser and most recently, Creekstone Farms. Chris married Ashley Holt on June 24, 1994 in Arkansas City. The couple had two children together, Kade and Khloe. Chris loved being a father, coaching his son in sports and actively supporting both Kade and Khloe in athletics. Chris married Julie Coplen on April 21, 2017 in Ponca City, Okla. The couple was blessed to have a basset hound they named Rosie. When Chris wasn’t working, he enjoyed spending time on his deck by the fire pit, cooking steaks and entertaining his family. Whenever Chris did anything, he always had music playing. He was a great dancer and made his kitchen a dance floor with Julie every night. He adored his dog, Rosie, but his children, Kade and Khloe, were most important to him. Chris was especially close to his brother John, whom he contacted daily. Chris’s smile and humor were contagious, and he brought so much joy to those he loved. Chris had an immense host of friends and will be missed dearly. He was preceded in death by grandparents, Sam (Joye) Kanelakos and John (Idabelle) Nickle; his father; and sister, Lynn (Bruce) Burries. Chris is survived by his wife, Julie; son Kade Kanelakos and wife, Emma; daughter, Khloe Kanelakos; mother, Donna Graham; brother, John Kanelakos; and sister, Sharon Medlin.