Steve Shackleford Blog

Halligan, K.I.S.S. Designer, Passes At 81

The CRKT K.I.S.S. designed by Ed Halligan.

Ed’s K.I.S.S. design for CRKT was the BLADE Magazine 1998 Imported Knife Of The Year® and is widely considered one of the most copied knives in modern cutlery history.

Edward Francis Halligan—better known as Ed—designer of the revolutionary K.I.S.S. folding knife and long-time custom knifemaker, passed away Saturday. He was 81.

Graveside services will be held at 2 p.m. Nov. 22 at Hillcrest Cemetery in Savannah, Georgia, under the direction of Gamble Funeral Service of Savannah.

An aircraft mechanic in the U.S. Air Force from 1953-57, Ed also worked for Delta for 37 years. He founded Halligan and Son Knives in 1985 and became a member of the Knifemakers’ Guild in 1990 and the American Bladesmith Society in 1992. He received his ABS master smith rating in 1996 and the B.R. Hughes Award for the best knife submitted by a master smith applicant the same year.

Ed Halligan passed away Saturday.

Ed passed away Saturday. He was 81.

Ed’s K.I.S.S. custom folder took the world of knives by storm in the late 1990s at such venues as the Guild Show and the BLADE Show. Halligan signed a collaboration deal with CRKT to reproduce the K.I.S.S.—”Keep It Super Simple”—and the knife won the BLADE Magazine 1998 Imported Knife Of The Year®. CRKT officials heaped praise on the K.I.S.S., calling it one of the knives that put CRKT on the map, and the neat little folder became one of the most popular and most copied knife designs in the world. It also spawned any number of designs based on the K.I.S.S. in the CRKT line, including the Delilah’s P.E.C.K., Sweet K.I.S.S. and others.

According to a CRKT release, “Ed’s passion for knifemaking and his zest for life were an inspiration to all. He will be profoundly missed. Our thoughts go out to his wife, Beverly Ann Halligan, and the rest of his family during this difficult time.”

Ed had an outgoing personality and a lively, quick wit. He made many friends in the industry and stayed active into his later years, including riding his recumbent bike.

He was the second custom knifemaker designer for CRKT to recently pass away, the other being BLADE Magazine Cutlery Hall-Of-Fame© member Kit Carson.


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