Frybarger, Karen Lynn

January 5, 1974–April 18, 2021

Karen Lynn Frybarger, 47, of Closter, NJ passed away very peacefully in her own home and with her husband by her side on April 18, 2021 from respiratory failure due to Cystic Fibrosis.

Born January 5, 1974 in Jersey City, NJ, Karen is survived by her husband Charles Minichiello, her mother Eleanor, her sister Gail and brother-in-law Paul Cole and their daughter, Catherine. She was pre-deceased by her brother Glenn and her father Homer. In addition, Karen is survived by the extended Minichiello family and her dear friends Maureen Barwinski, Sandy Morelli, and Tony Ramsay.

Karen earned a Bachelor of Social Sciences at St. Thomas Aquinas College in 1997 and a Masters in Education from St. Peter’s College in 2011. She was a Kindergarten teacher at Holy Trinity School in Hackensack from 2000–2004 and, after that, she taught Pre-K in Northern Valley School District. She loved teaching children and felt that her day-to-day contact with them always helped her in becoming a better person herself.

In spite of a life-long battle with Cystic Fibrosis, Karen managed to live an active life, including doing yoga every day. She had also recently begun studying to become a Reiki practitioner. Karen enjoyed hang gliding, going aloft in balloons, and she was an avid and expert snowboarder as well, often traveling out West to find the perfect snow. It was a sport she loved and excelled at for many years until she had to give it up due to the effects of the cold air on her lungs.

Ever curious about the world, Karen was a voracious reader, particularly of self-help books. Her artistic side was expressed by the charming miniatures she painted as well as by her beautiful writing, including an as yet unpublished memoir. In spite of the obstacles her illness placed before her, Karen managed to overcome them with both bravery and cheerfulness. She was loved as a daughter, sister, wife, in-law, friend, and colleague and will remain in our hearts always.

Funeral Mass will be held at Sacred Heart Church, 102 Park Street, Haworth, NJ on Friday, April 23rd, at 10 am. In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to the following organizations: NJ State Organization of Cystic Fibrosis, Coach-Ed Organization, Cystic Fibrosis Lifestyle Foundation, and The Boomer Esiason Foundation.