Sad News

It is with a very heavy heart that I must report to the FIRST community that Scott A. Libert, team 2465 mentor extraordinaire, patient and helpful volunteer judge and CSA, founder of KauaiLabs and creator of the NavX family of products, passed away on June 15, 2022. He will be sorely missed, but his memory will be a blessing and inspiration for our team - and undoubtedly many others that he touched, guided and helped along the way - for years to come.

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I first interacted with Scott when he announced the Nav6 and was looking for someone to help with the LabVIEW library for it. We used a NavX on every robot from 2015-2019. I met him a few times either at Championship or when 2465 was competing at a west coast regional. He was always looking for feedback and looking forward to the next sensor improvement that would make solely inertial navigation doable for FRC.

He will be missed. I was hoping to see him again in Kauai in September.

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Very sorry to hear. He will be greatly missed.

Had a nice chat with him in 2019 champs, and also learning about the vmx-pi and also the navX. Always extremely helpful and generous.

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We are really sorry to hear of his passing. Gone way too soon.

Condolences to his family and Team 2465. I will personally miss the talks we had over the years, especially at the Hawaii Regional.

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I’m more than a bit shocked right now. I knew Scott since the original NavX days and work we did back then to help create LabVIEW support for it. It was pure chance that we got to talking because of an order mixup and him fixing it. I’ve had dinner with him and his partner several times at CMP. Among the discussion of surfing, coffee, and robots were loads of great stories and memories. The world needs a lot more Scott Liberts in it.

He also hosted a dinner for myself and some Zebracorn students and mentors one year and picked our brains all about ROS and “what’s next”. I gave the news tonight to a few folks at the lab and our new students didn’t know Scott but they knew something was wrong from the reactions of the mentors there. He was someone who was passionate and loved to learn. He was an inspiration and he left his mark on FRC in a big way and I cannot thank him and credit him enough for what he contributed to us.

Scott, a hui hou, my friend. You are missed and remembered.

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FRC Team 1501 T.H.R.U.S.T. send their condolences to the family, friends and team of Scott Libert.
You will be missed.
Rest in Peace.

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Ugh. This is truly sad news. May peace somehow be with Scott’s family and friends during this time of loss.

Scott and I worked together to provide NavX products to the FIRST community, as AndyMark is one of their few distributors. Scott was always very careful and attentive to providing enough parts for teams, even if his supply chain costs were sometimes raised higher than he would have liked. He was always consistent in providing great product to the FIRST community and supported the teams in an excellent manner. Many, many FTC and FRC teams had great operating robots because of Scott and the fantastic NavX products.

Shipping things to and from NavX has always been interesting, as he and his wife has consistently operated the business from the tiny island of Kauai. I will remember Scott as always patient, kind, and smiling. That wide smile was inviting and comforting, even when he would explain technical things to me that he knew I didn’t totally grasp.

Rest in Peace, Scott.

Andy B.

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I have received permission from Scott’s daughter to re-post here what she recently posted on Facebook, for those who have questions about this tragic turn of events. I think it is very important to share this kind of information, if only as a reminder that people may be struggling mightily beyond what others can know or see. I know I was very pleased to see Scott at robotics this spring, looking as if his health was improving after finishing the chemo, meeting our new students and mentors and talking of how he was looking forward to coming back to the team next year, with no indication at all of what he was really going through.

Dear family, friends, and others,

This past Wednesday, my dad passed away very suddenly. You may or may not know that last year, he was diagnosed with Stage 3 colon cancer. He immediately underwent intensive chemotherapy and completed his treatment late last fall. His most recent scans were clear and showed no evidence of new tumors. Although we were relieved that his cancer had not progressed, he continued to suffer from side effects of his chemotherapy that drastically changed the quality of his life.

Many of my happiest memories of my dad from inside my childhood home in Oregon include listening to him play Scott Joplin, among other compositions and improvisations, on our Baby Grand Piano. One of the primary side effects of his chemotherapy was neuropathy in his fingers, which changed his ability to enjoy playing the piano. Another sacrifice was giving up his hobby of paddleboarding. The other, much more debilitating side effect was terrible insomnia. I believe this, among many other factors that I can only imagine, but likely including covid, the loss of his father in June of 2020, financial worries, and mounting costly repairs to our house, left him feeling unable to do what he cared about most in this world: taking care of and providing for his family.

Depression is a very serious disease, and finding the right kind of help takes time, motivation, and perseverance. These are things that are not easy, especially for those with depression. My dad was fiercely protective but deeply afraid of admitting how much he struggled. Few were aware of my dad’s depression. It became apparent in the last few weeks that his condition was rapidly deteriorating, and we desperately tried to get him help. I’ll never know what was going through his head in his final moments, but I want to believe that inside the alternate reality that his depression created, he probably felt that he was doing the best thing for my mom and me.

I always saw my father as a good and kind man who only wanted to do the right thing for his family. My mom and I are utterly devastated and heartbroken by this sudden loss. * * *

My family and I are blessed to have many people who care about us, and I know not everyone is so lucky. We are so thankful for everyone who has already reached out to offer their love and support. Even short messages of condolences I have found incredibly comforting.
Much love,
Jasmine

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Please pass on my condolences to Scott’s family. He was a wonderful and generous member of our community. He will be missed though we are all richer for having known him.

I had gotten to know Scott after corresponding with him about some of his products. It was a very pleasant surprise to be able to meet him in person a the first Houston Champs. After that, it was always a highlight to stop by Scott’s booth at Houston Champs to say “Hi” each year. I missed seeing Scott at Houston Champs and just thought it was due to Covid and/or the higher cost of travel. It is very sad to hear that he is no longer with us.

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This is very sad to read.

I did not know him, but I want to add that his products have been essential teaching tools for our team and so many others. The NavX will definitely be a legacy he leaves behind.

If the family has any sort of method to help offset costs they may be struggling with, please share it here.

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For those of you who are either struggling with mental illness such as depression, or more importantly, know a someone that you’re close with who’s struggling, there are many local chapters of the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) that offer free support groups and resources and referrals to care givers. Those chapters also advocate for improved local services. You can find your local chapter at this web site: Home | NAMI: National Alliance on Mental Illness

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The NavX was the first real sensor I learned to use for robot feedback, way back in 2014 when I was still a mechanical mentor. The simplicity and user-friendliness of the product made it astoundingly good for teaching, especially when there weren’t really any other plug-and-play alternatives.

This is a very sad loss.

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