San Diego, Calif.
Lynn Charles Naibert, 83, slipped away from us on Monday, April 20, 2020, at UCSD Thornton Hospital
from COVID-19 pneumonia.
Lynn was born in Cedar Rapids, on Nov. 26,
1936, to parents Marguerite Anna (Burrows) Naibert and
Arthur Charles Naibert, DDS.
Lynn's father, Arthur, studied dentistry at the University of Iowa and served in the Army as a dentist during World War II. Lynn and his mom joined Arthur at Camp Hulen in Palacios, Texas, where Arthur took care of the dental needs of German prisoners of war. Some of Lynn's fondest memories were of time spent with his dad and of his Palacios kindergarten teacher, Miss Sisson. After the war, the family returned to Cedar Rapids, where Arthur resumed his dental practice.
Frances Zila, Lynn's grandmother, left her village of Rovecna, Moravia, in 1912 and sailed to America where she met and married Frank Naibert in Cedar Rapids. They raised three boys, Ben, Arthur and Paul. Frances was a popular caterer, in addition to baking legions of traditional poppy seed, cherry and prune kolaches, selling them from her kitchen door.
Marguerite Burrows, Lynn's mother, was born in Cedar Rapids to Ulysses S. Burrows and Letitia Knox Burrows. Ulysses was a postmaster and delivered mail on horseback. Marguerite studied music at Coe College.
Lynn grew up in Cedar Rapids. He attended McKinley High School and played the drums at school dances.
Entering the Class of '54 at the University of Iowa, Lynn met a petite blond in high heels from Currier Hall at the University's President Orientation welcome. Lynn found his forever love that evening in Penelope Prentiss. He invited her for coffee and they married six months later.
Penny was the middle daughter of Alice Louise (Pogemiller) and Robert J. Prentiss, M.D. Robert's father, Henry J. Prentiss, M.D. was the founding professor of Anatomy at the University's School of Medicine. Lynn's dad remembered studying anatomy under a very rigorous Dr. Prentiss.
Lynn and Penny spent five happy years living in the Married Student Housing (otherwise known as the World War II Quonset huts) in Finkbine Park. While living there, they managed to squeezed into the hut two baby daughters, Pamela and Beverly.
Lynn spent many weekends playing the drums for Jerry Fronek and the Dude Ranchers to support his growing family. Lynn received a B.A. in English/history in 1958, and a master's degree in social studies, receiving his teaching credentials in 1959.
After graduation, it was goodbye Iowa and hello California! Lynn and Penny settled in San Diego with their two daughters where Lynn accepted a teaching position at Lincoln High School. While at Lincoln, the Hispanic student body honored him for his work on college applications and scholarships to universities and colleges for the students. He was recruited by the University of California San Diego as associate dean of student affairs and financial aid in the late 1960s. The Vietnam War brought student unrest to the campus and played into his decision to return to teaching in the city schools. In 1970, a surprise bundle arrived, Paul Prentiss Naibert, joining his sisters. Lynn's career took him from teaching to counseling and then to district counseling, until retirement in 1996.
In 2015, Lynn and Penny celebrated 60 years of marriage.
They enjoyed playing Bridge and growing roses. Lynn played racquetball at the San Diego Rowing Club until it closed. The family loved playing bocce ball during summers at Mission Bay with the Camarda family. Always the Anglophile, Lynn visited the British Isles with Penny and Pat and Henry Lawrence. He and Penny enjoyed many years of volunteering at the Czech House in Balboa Park. They also visited Czechoslovakia and Rovecna to water the family roots. Lynn played golf three times a week in retirement. With his thermos of hot coffee and newspaper, he would arrive predawn to sign up at Balboa to get "first on." He loved reading and embraced Thich Nhat Hanh's Buddhist writings and meditations. Continuing an important part of family culture going back to the 1920s, Lynn was an Iowa Hawkeyes football fan. He
and Penny were original season ticketholders to the San Diego Chargers until the end and loyal tailgaters. Lynn served at St. Paul's Episcopal Church since 1980 and was on the committee to welcome The Queen of England when she visited St. Paul's Cathedral during her visit to San Diego in February 1983. In 2011, he was presented
with the Bishop Harold Robinson Cross for his service and devotion to the church. He and Penny enjoyed attending San Diego Opera. Lynn found brotherhood at AA which kept him going back for 30 plus years. He was a mentor and sponsor in AA and, for a time, traveled to Donovan State Prison to lead meetings.
Lynn cherished his hometown and Czech heritage. His touchstones during his many visits to Cedar Rapids included the places he frequented with his parents in his youth, including Polehna Brothers Meat Market, Sykora Bakery, Little Bohemia (famous Czech goulash), Zindricks, Ellis Park, the Higley Professional Building where his father practice dentistry, and the Czech National Cemetery where the family is buried. Frank Naibert, cobbler in Ely, Iowa, purchased the family plot under the original Czech spelling "Najbrt." Lynn donated to the National Czech & Slovak Museum & Library the mercury glass baptismal chalice Frances carried with her from Moravia. The chalice later survived the great Cedar River flood of June 2008!
Rest in peace Lynn. You were a loving and kind son, father, teacher and mentor to family and society. Your sense of humor ruled the day. Your mantra "Breathe in, breathe out" lives on!
Lynn was preceded in death by loving wife of 60 years, Penelope Prentiss Naibert, in 2015; by his parents, Marguerite and Arthur; and sister-in-law, Susan Prentiss Martin.
Lynn is survived by his daughters, Beverly Naibert of Bay Park, Calif., and Pamela and husband Paul R. Reeb, M.D. of Whitefish, Mont., (formerly of San Diego, Calif.); sons, Paul Naibert and wife Cyndy of Leucadia, Calif., and Jay Guild Burton and wife Janet of Leawood, Kan.; grandsons, Nevin Naibert, Christian Reeb, Andrew Walker and Greydon Walker; granddaughters, Penelope-Lynn Billie Reeb, Jessica Burton Aulisio and husband Mark of Chicago and Meredith Burton of Chicago; by sister-in-law, Julia and husband Andy Diez of Oakland, Calif.; nephews, Christopher Diez of Burlingame, Calif., and Max and Ashley Diez of Berkeley, Calif; and nieces, Alice Martin, Sarah Martin Williams, Barbara Martin and nephew, Wade Martin, all of South Carolina. Also survived by Patricia Ann (Leoni) Cain, mom of Jay, a gift who was lost and found again, a tie that was never broken.
Lynn's family would like to extend a heartfelt thank you to the heroic doctors, nurses and diagnostic staff at UCSD-La Jolla, who worked under quarantine conditions to care for Lynn. Thank you to Elizabeth Hospice for their compassionate end of life care in the hospital and Chaplain Tom for last rites and family counseling. Thank you to Sarah Ferrara, MSW of Salus Home Care for her excellent guidance. Thank you to Sheila for her help at home.
Lynn's ashes will be placed next to his wife, Penny, at St. Paul's Cathedral Church, San Diego. Merkley Mitchell Mortuary is attending to the family.