John Weston Lindblad, 88, was born August 6, 1930 in Oakland, CA and raised by his parents Roy C. Lindblad and Alice J. Doyle. At the age of 6 in 1937 Roy and Alice moved their family back to Roy’s family farm in Hilmar, CA where John attended school and worked as a young boy with his father on the dairy farm.
Like his father, after high school John went on to college to earn a degree in engineering and also served in the U.S. Army. John first attended University of California in Davis and studied agricultural engineering, then after a couple of years John transferred to University of California, Berkeley. He received his B.S. in Engineering in 1952 and was promptly drafted into the military to serve in the U.S. Army during the Korean War.
John married Mary Lee True, who he met while attending University of California, Berkeley. They married on August 30, 1952. John came home from the military in 1954 and worked with his father Roy on the family farm for a short time after the war, until he decided to pursue a different career. In 1955 he was hired as an assistant county engineer for the Napa County Public Works Department. John and Mary moved to Napa where they raised three children, two sons and a daughter. The family enjoyed picnics, fishing, canoeing, and many camping vacations in Northern California. John always loved the outdoors, enjoyed going outside to work in the yard and on house projects, building things, and going on walks and hikes.
John later married Deanna Lynne Barkema (Havard) on July 17, 1976 and together they lived in Napa along with Dee’s daughter who he helped raise. John and Dee were married over 40 years until her passing on January 29, 2017. John and Dee shared many interests, they both loved Napa Valley red wines, attending various harvest festivals and social gatherings, golfing, bowling, going on outings with their long-time friends, and enjoying backyard pool parties and BBQ’s with friends and family.
John was a proud resident of Napa for 64 years. He devoted his entire career to working in public service. He enjoyed designing things that people would use. His civil engineering career began in 1955 as an assistant county engineer for the Napa County Public Works Department where he worked for 8 years, then in 1963 John was hired by the City of Napa as the Public Works Director where he directed about 100 employees of the city’s workforce. He worked there for 28 years until 1991. During his career, he designed many of the town roads, bridges, worked on public buildings, and traffic designs. He guided the city through countless floods and helped to bring clean drinking water to the people. He steered the downtown through its controversial one-way streets and helped repair many of the towns buckling sidewalks. Later in his career and into retirement, John continued to work as a consultant on the Napa Flood Project to design a system to relieve the downtown from frequent flooding.
During the 1970s, John was a member of the Lyon’s Club of Napa. He enjoyed going to club meetings and socializing with the community. For years John was a regular volunteer working in the Lyon’s Club steak sandwich trailer at the Napa County Fair grilling up steak sandwiches.
From 1998 until the day he died, John was a proud member of the Kiwanis Club of Napa. John enjoyed getting involved in the community, especially projects like building playgrounds for the Boys and Girls Club of Napa. He regularly attended weekly luncheons of the Kiwanis Club and became long-time friends with many of his fellow members. John often said that going to those Kiwanis luncheons on Thursday afternoons was one of his favorite activities.
John was a lifelong fan of baseball and was a devoted fan of the Oakland A’s. In the 1980s John was an Oakland A’s season ticket holder for many years and enjoyed going to the games and listening to games on the radio when he couldn’t be there. He always loved following his A’s.
John was also very proud of his alma mater Cal Football team. He followed the Cal football games each year and enjoyed going to the games with his long-time friends. John was a proud supporter of the Cal Golden Bears and was often seen wearing his blue and gold Cal hats or jackets around town on weekends.
John was a very humble, gentle soul with a sense of humor that was infectious. He had a heart of gold and genuinely liked helping people. He loved life and all the simple pleasures in life. He absolutely loved spending time with his children and grandchildren. He is survived by his two sons Michael G. Lindblad and Lawrence D. Lindblad, his daughter Jennifer D. Giambastini (Lindblad), step-daughter Heather L. Havard, his grandsons Rustin B. Lindblad and Benjamin L. Lindblad, and granddaughters Megan N. Giambastini and Emily M. Giambastini.
A Celebration of John’s life will be held on Friday August 23rd at 11am at TULOCAY Cemetery and Funeral Home at 411 Coombsville Rd., Napa, CA 94559. Reception to follow from 12pm-2pm. In lieu of flowers, John would have wanted donations to go to The Kiwanis Club of Napa.