Christopher (Topher) Rey Hartig, 33, of Olathe, Kansas for 22 months battled cancer without ever giving up hope. On Tuesday, June 28th, he was called back home to be beside Jesus, because he needed a true warrior. Doctors gave him 3 weeks to 6 months to live in December of 2014. That was before they truly understood how strong Christopher’s determination and love for his family was. He defied all odds, exceeded all expectations, and carried out his duties above reproach as a Man of God/Father/Husband/Brother/Son/Friend/Co-Worker better than anyone else could have ever done. He garnered the nickname “Superman”.
When speaking to the character of the man, and looking to see the greatest qualities that exemplify his life, one need only take stock in the number of lives he’s touched. Christopher saw everyone in his life as family, which speaks directly to the character and respect he had for each person and how he touched those lives for the better.
Christopher is survived by Ashley, his beautiful wife of 15 years and three spectacular, vibrant and beautiful children who are an exact delineation of Christopher’s character; two daughters, Kylah, 14, and Chloe, 7, and one son Clayton, 10. A loving father, Timothy Hartig and mother Cynthia Hartig, of Olathe, Kansas, mother Tracy McGrath, of Shawnee, Kansas and ex-husband Hadi Fiuzat, of Fairway, Kansas, brother Joseph Hartig, of Olathe, Kansas, brother Billy Jackson and sister Joanna Jackson,of Farmington New Mexico, and sister Danyelle Westphal and brother David Westphall, of Overland Park, Kansas. After Christopher and Ashley got married he was inducted into the Bieker family as one of their own. He is survived by a father, Dean Bieker and mother, Janice Bieker, sister, Nicole Gray, brother Adam Gray, and a sister Heather Randel and brother Blake Randel, all from Olathe, KS. Chris also had a multitude of beautiful nieces and nephews.
Christopher was born on July 25th, 1982 in Kansas City, Missouri at Research Medical Center. As a young boy he made friends up and down the block. It was second nature to him. He owned a large collection of hot wheels that his father gave to him. He distributed those cars to the kids that were less fortunate than he was. He loved Saturday morning cartoons: X-men, Batman, Spiderman, Superman, Care Bears, and Gargoyles. One of his proudest moments as a child was when he jumped off the top of the slide on the swing set. That was the first time he attempted to be Superman, but not his last. He played baseball just to appease his father for two seasons, but it was the game of soccer that drew out the true passion in him; so much so, that he played the game all throughout his life. He would spend countless hours practicing; being a midfielder and defender in the backyard of his house. Another passion of his was swimming for the Olathe South High School swim team. Given that he grew up with a pool in his backyard, it gave him a great advantage on the other swimmers. He excelled in any event that he participated in, due partly, to the game of tag that was played every summer day in the backyard with “family” (Friends). The backyard was a place of gathering for all. Throughout the years, the Hartig house was the place to unwind, swim, and forget your troubles. Many friendships were made and fostered during those times. Christopher sang in choir in Junior High (Indian Trail Junior High School) and High School (Olathe South High School).
During senior year of high school he met the girl, now woman, of his dreams, Ashley. She was a year younger than him. They met at Studio 2000 while Christopher was putting on the best “White” man moves possible on the dance floor. Ashley was stricken by his charisma, laughter and his baby blue eyes. Christopher treasured his responsibilities as a Father, Man, and Husband as his true and only purpose. He would work upwards of 3 jobs just to make sure his family was taken care of. The jobs that he held: server, bartender, masseuse, construction-worker with his father-in-law, Dean, Family Business, router for medical supplies, Security/Medical Response for a casino, and pursuing his dream career as a firefighter. Most weeks he would work 7 days a week with few days off. When he was fortunate enough to take time off work it would usually fall on a Sunday. He dubbed those days as, “Sunday Fundays” and all were welcome, because everyone was family!
He was the kind of man to let his own light shine so bright, that in doing so he gave others permission to do the same. As he was liberated from his own fears his presence liberated everyone around him. He will be fiercely missed and the world will be a little less bright without him. That is, until you remember him and draw strength from his memory, so that you might brighten the world, and touch the lives of those around you.
The Celebration of Life will be held at Olathe Bible Church 13700 W. 151st Olathe, KS 66062 on Tuesday, July 5th, 5:00 pm-9:00 pm. A small service will be held at 7pm lead by Pastor Fred Laugherty, and music performed by close friends Adam Thomas and Harry Travis, along with a special performance by Flannigan’s Right Hook Guitarist, Cameron Russell. Please do not wear any black as this is a celebration of life and we are doing just that; celebrating how great this man is by wearing the brightest colors you have in your closet. If you feel inclined to give to the family, please refrain from sending flowers, gifts, or other materialistic items. Please visit https://www.gofundme.com/b3g8xzmmg or a collection box will be available at the church during the Celebration. Any donation will be used for the needs of the family and creating a college fund for his children.
Olathe Bible Church
Olathe Bible Church