UW-Platteville Athletic Director and Assistant Chancellor Dr. Kristina Navarro-Krupka was pregnant when she died unexpectedly in November 2023, and now her husband is remembering his wife and unborn child.
Nick Krupka shared a heartbreaking tribute to Navarro-Krupka and their daughter, who was already named Karina Maria.
Chancellor Dr. Tammy Evetovich told WKOW-TV that Navarro-Krupka “unexpectedly died during pregnancy.”
The husband confirmed on November 19, 2023, that both had passed away over the weekend and shared a photo collage of his wife, their unborn daughter’s ultrasound photo and her finished nursery. Nick Krupka is an Engineering lecturer at University of Wisconsin-Platteville, according to his Facebook page.
Here’s what you need to know:
The Husband of Kristina Navarro-Krupka Says She Was ‘the Love of My Life’
In the post, Nick Krupka wrote: “I don’t even know how to feel right now, but I want everyone to know that my wife, Kristina Navarro-Krupka and our daughter Karina Maria, passed away suddenly this weekend. We will send out funeral arrangements as soon as we know.”
He added: “Kristina was the love of my life! I feel so broken right now I don’t know what to do next. You were my forever boo-boo! Karina Maria, I loved you the first moment I knew and wanted to see you grow! I loved your kicks. Even though I never got to hold you, I’m glad I knew your name.”
The university offered sympathies to Navarro-Krupka’s family.
You can see his tribute with photos here.
“Our deepest sympathies go out to Dr. Kristina Navarro-Krupka’s family and Pioneer Family during this difficult time,” UW-Platteville wrote in a Facebook post. “UW-Platteville University Counseling Services are available for students, while UW-Platteville faculty and staff may utilize the Universities of Wisconsin Employee Assistance Program. We encourage anyone who may be needing assistance to reach out for supportive services.”
Navarro-Krupka’s obituary says that “Kristina Marie Navarro-Krupka, age 39, and her daughter, Karina Maria Krupka, of Platteville, passed away from natural causes on Saturday, Nov. 18, 2023.”
Kristina is survived by her husband, Nick; father, Michael (Debbie Fairweather) Meissen; brother, Brad (Lauren) Meissen; sister, Katelyn (Jake) Keller; grandmothers, Mary Erickson and Patricia (Steve Aronson) Meissen; grandfather, Marvin (Patty-Lee) Meissen; and many aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends. She was preceded in death by her mother, Karen Ellen Meissen; grandfather, Donald Erickson; aunt, Kristin Erickson; and father and mother-in-law, Norbert and Mary Ann Krupka.
Others Who Knew Kristina Navarro-Krupka Also Offered Tributes to Her
Others who knew Navarro-Krupka flooded social media with tributes to her.
A woman wrote on Facebook, “This is a time when life truly doesn’t make sense. I have so many great memories from high school playing volleyball and basketball, hanging out, and just laughing. You will be sorely missed, Kristina Navarro-Krupka, by all who knew you. Especially those closest to you – your family and dear friends. Holding everyone in my heart and sending so much love ❤️”
A work colleague wrote, “Like everyone else, I was shocked to hear about this news. She had a great vision for the department – look all around campus and you’ll see updates to branding, corporate sponsorships filling in around game venues, and a vibe that is fun, relaxed, and professional. Beyond athletics, she led the sports administration master’s program that I was accepted into, among several other achievements and accolades.”
A friend wrote, “I was extremely shocked and saddened to find out one of my friends from back home passed away yesterday. Kristina Navarro-Krupka always had a smile on her face, especially when biking . . . I will forever miss ripping the singletrack trails at Blackhawk and Camrock with you. RIP.”
Navarro-Krupka’s university bio page says:
Kristina Navarro Ph.D., CSCS is in her fourth year as the Director of Athletics and Assistant Chancellor at UW-Platteville. Reporting to the Chancellor as a member of the cabinet, Navarro oversees the Division of Athletics and Recreation which includes 16 NCAA Division III athletic programs, intramurals, campus recreation, fitness and wellness programming, the Pioneer Leadership Institute and the Pioneer Activity Center. As a tenured faculty member, Navarro teaches 5 courses and coordinates the graduate program in sport administration within the College of Liberal Arts and Education.
In her faculty and campus leadership role, Navarro continues to build campus wide leadership development programming for the Chancellor’s Scholars, Capstan Scholars, Regent Scholars, and Pioneer Student-Athlete Advisory Committee groups. These groups intentionally merged with the launch of the Pioneer Leadership Institute in 2020.
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