10-21-21, Elizabeth “Betty” Nava, 98

Family and friends celebrate the life of Elizabeth “Betty” Nava, an extraordinary woman who passed away the morning of October 21 at 98 years of age. The child of Basque immigrants, she was born in San Diego, California on September 24, 1923. She spent much of her childhood on her father’s ranch in Baja, California. She loved Mexico and was proud of her Basque heritage but she was all-American. She was captain of the drill team at San Diego High School where her yearbook said she “bubbles with enthusiasm.” She was also valedictorian of her class of 1941.

She fell in love with Rudolph “Rudy” Nava, a star athlete from Sweetwater High School. Their marriage lasted 70 years, until Rudy’s passing in 2013. They were true soul mates.

They married in 1943 when the world was engulfed in war and Rudy served as a soldier in Italy. Betty was a woman of courage and she also proudly served her country along with other bi-lingual Hispanic women, monitoring phone calls between Mexico and the United States.

She identified a German saboteur and made certain he was captured and incarcerated, saving hundreds of lives and the aircraft plant he was planning to destroy.

Nothing was more important to Betty than her family. After the war, she and Rudy had two boys, John and Gregory. She gave them all her love and devotion and supported their dreams. John became a fine art painter and Gregory a filmmaker. Her love of her children was equaled only by her love of her grandchildren, Christopher, Theodore, Matthew and, Michael. And she was looking forward to the birth of her first great-grandchild, Isme Elizabeth the daughter of Christopher and Danica Nava.

Betty’s magnificent spirit inspired everyone in her family and her memory will always be with us and We are joyful knowing that she is now united with her true love, Rudy, for all eternity.

Services will be held Thursday, November 4, 2021, at 1:00 p.m., at St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church, 185 St. Thomas Dr. Ojai, CA 93023. A reception at the adjacent Aquinas Center will follow.

In lieu of sending flowers, the family requests that donations be made to the Dolores Huerta Foundation at

Arrangements are under the direction of the Joseph P. Reardon Funeral Home & Cremation Service, Ventura.

Obit Nava photo