The Rev. John Naus died today at age 89 after recently suffering a stroke, his second stroke in 10 years. He was placed in palliative care Wednesday.
Naus worked at Marquette for 49 years before retiring in the fall of 2012. He was well known by students for presiding over Tuesday night Mass, his Marquette spirit and comedic personality. While chaplain of Schroeder Hall for 28 years, he presided over a Saturday night Mass and became well known by residents for the character “Tumbleweed the clown,” a name he received from wearing a clown suit and attending clown school frequently. He would use the last class of his theology courses to teach students how to make balloon animals.
After attending Marquette University High School, he graduated from Gregorian University in Rome in 1955 with a degree in philosophy. Naus was ordained a priest at Gesu in the same year. He was diagnosed with polio in 1944, and his first stroke in 2004 confined him to a wheelchair.