Bulletin of Dental Education

Two Schools Share Loss After Students’ Tragic Deaths

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Kyle Naylor
Tyson Dennert

During the holiday season, the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, School of Dental Medicine (UNLV SDM) and the University of Washington School of Dentistry (UW SOD) celebrated the lives of second-year dental students Kyle Naylor and Tyson Dennert, who died in a plane crash on Nov. 30, 2019.

Mr. Naylor and Mr. Dennert were not only well-accomplished students, they were also brothers-in-law. Seven other family members also perished in the crash.

Mr. Dennert leaves behind his wife and their two children, ages 3 and 1, with another child expected. Similarly, Mr. Naylor leaves behind his wife and their two children, ages 4 and 2, also with another child expected.

“We are all devastated by this tragedy,” says Gary Chiodo, D.M.D., Dean of UW SOD. “Tyson was a wonderful young man and fine student who enjoyed the respect and affection of his fellow students and our faculty and staff. Our hearts go out to the rest of his family.”

“I think the Class of 2022 president best described Kyle when he wrote ‘All who knew Kyle, loved him. His happy presence was uplifting for all of us,’” says Lily T. García, D.D.S., M.S., FACP, Dean of UNLV SDM. “Kyle’s class decided to create a memorial book for his wife and children. They intend the book to be something his kids can read and learn about the quality of man that was their dad.”

Classmates articulated similar characteristics about both men.

Mr. Dennert’s classmates described him as a serious, dedicated student who could also flash a sharp, dry humor. “You could always count on him for a smile and a laugh,” one shares.

“He had so much integrity,” another classmate says. “You knew that whenever he had to make a decision, it would always be professional.

One of the submissions for the Naylor family memorial book states, “Beyond being kind, Kyle was funny and exuded such a warm energy. He frequently made jokes and our whole bench would frequently have to stifle giggles during lecture.”

Another read, “I remember late nights we would spend studying before exams and how often he would sacrifice study time and sleep to make sure he could be home in time to put his kids to bed. He was the ultimate example of a father and a friend.”

The privilege of working with these two men has made their fellow classmates and respective school communities stronger for having known them. 

Courtesy of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, School of Dental Medicine and the University of Washington School of Dentistry


Published on March 11, 2020

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