Meleyna Victoria Kistner, 21, who called both Naperville, Ill., and Hawthorn Woods, Ill., home, died Saturday evening, Aug. 23, near Glenwood Springs, Colo. She was in the midst of an 11-day cross country trip, with her boyfriend Daniel Thul, who survived. Meleyna was going to start her senior year at Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology in Terre Haute, Indiana, where she maintained a GPA of 3.6, next week. Meleyna blossomed at Rose, meeting the challenging course load head on with a drive and enthusiasm that only she could bring. She studied Mechanical Engineering and had just finished an internship with Remy International in Pendelton, Ind., where she successfully completed a competitive product comparison of their Alternator product line.
Meleyna enjoyed spending time at the beach in Florida, time in the Northwoods area of upper Wisconsin, and had recently decided to travel and explore the great wonders of our beautiful country. She loved to listen to her tunes and take road trips and she died doing what she loved ... driving through God’s beautiful wonders. Her desire and passion for knowledge and exploration manifested itself in fixing cars and tinkering with mechanical things. If there was something to fix, improve, or make more efficient, she was on it. She would design a new way, a better way, and invent what she could. We would always call it “Melie’s way.” At the end of her Junior year, she participated on a cross disciplinary team of students in the national Eco Car challenge.
She was a 2011 graduate of Neuqua Valley High School in Naperville. Meleyna’s joy for learning and determination to accomplish and excel in all she did was only outdone by her positive and energetic outlook on life. She was a beacon of light, who had a contagious laugh, and brought joy to all who knew her. She was fearless in life, and did many things others only talked about doing. Once she set her mind on getting something done, there was simply no stopping her.
She is survived by Ruth Cofre-Carlson and Remo Kistner, her biological parents, as well as her step-dad Ron Carlson and her step-mom Heather Eddy Kistner. Also surviving is her brother Kyle (23), half-brothers Nathan Carlson (9) and Kody Kistner (6) and step-siblings Haley Harbath (12) and Danny Carlson (15). She is also survived by grandmothers Martina Kistner and Sarita Ramirez, and numerous extended family.
Visitation will be Friday, Aug. 29, from 3-9 p.m., at Davenport Funeral Home and Crematory, 149 W. Main St. (Lake-Cook Road) Barrington, IL. The funeral service will be held at 11:30 a.m., Saturday, Aug. 30, at the funeral home and is open to the public. Parking is available in the lot around the funeral home, on Main Street, in the lot to the West of the funeral home, and in the Jewel lot.
Everyone attending the funeral on Saturday is invited to an open house at the home of Ruth and Ron Carlson, 103 David Lane, Hawthorn Woods.
Please no flowers. Memorials to the Meleyna V. Kistner fund at www.rose-hulman.edu/give with a note in the designation or by calling 812-877-8217, are appreciated by the family.
You may leave condolences for the family at www.davenportfamily.com, or call 847-381-3411, for information.