Originally published Tuesday, January 30, 2018 at 06:00a.m.
Steven Miguel Zozaya of Phoenix, Arizona passed away on Jan. 13, 2018 at his home in Phoenix. He was born in Kingman, Arizona on Dec. 26, 1918 to his parents Miguel Zozaya and Manuela Trevino Zozaya, both Mohave County pioneers.
Steve and his five brothers and three sisters were all educated in Kingman schools. He graduated from Kingman High School in 1940 where he received a football scholarship to Northern Arizona University.
Joining the Army during WWII, he served in the Pacific Theatre, in Dutch New Guinea, where he was awarded The Purple Heart for being wounded. After rehabilitation in New Mexico, he returned to Kingman, Arizona
He later met Julia Soto, the daughter of a prominent Mohave Valley Rancher, whom he courted and then married in 1945. Steve worked on construction of the Davis Dam then moved to Phoenix, where he formed a construction company. Steve and Julia founded the area’s first Spanish speaking radio station, KNNN.
Steve and his Wife Julia were instrumental to the elevation of Mexican rights, by bringing LULAC to Arizona. For a long stretch of time Steve served as District Director. He worked very hard for positive change for the Hispanic Community at Large.
Owning the Soto Ranch, in Mohave Valley, they visited the Tri-State area often. They were active, loyal members of the Colorado River Historical Society; supporting all endeavors to sustain the Bullhead Museum.
Steve is preceded in death by his wife Julia, son Stephen Jr. and granddaughter Stephanie. He is survived by his brother Joe; grandchildren Stephen III, Debbie, Michael, Megan, Maria and Julie; and many great-grandchildren, nieces and nephews.
Services will be held on Feb. 3, 2018 at 1 p.m. at the St. Vincent Catholic Church on 51st Ave. in Phoenix with the burial on Feb. 5, 2018 at noon at the Mountainview Cemetery in Kingman, Arizona.