Ralph Goitia

November 16, 1928 ~ October 13, 2021 (age 92)


Ralph Goitia passed peacefully into heaven on October 13, 2021, after a long and happy life filled with family, friends, adventure, and song. Ralph was born on November 16, 1928 in Flagstaff, Arizona to Santiago and Manuela Goitia. He was one of eight children: Mary, David, Liz (Isabel), Charlie, Jimmy, Eddie, and Danny.

Ralph was married for 61 years to the love of his life, Alice. He is survived by Alice, and his children; Tere (Jeff) Goiita LeBarron, Eddie (Michelle) Goitia, Steven (Jaymie) Goitia and Melissa (Leo) Goitia Werner; his brother, Danny (Lynn) Goitia, and ten grandchildren; Grace, Brice, Zachary (Ciera), Mitchell, Madeline, Elise, Lana (Anthony), Marissa, Alicia and Emily, as well as numerous nieces, nephews and godchildren, all of whom he loved and adored. Ralph received a Bachelor's degree from Arizona State University, A Master's degree from Northern Arizona University, and a Doctoral degree in Education from Arizona State University. He was a loyal Sun Devil and a devoted football fan.

He loved being with family, especially his precious grandchildren. Ralph was a fair, compassionate and caring father and grandfather. He was a fast and loyal friend with a special blend of humor, sensitivity, tolerance, and compassion. Most especially, he was fun to have around and always quick to say, "Let's sing!" Upon request, his grandchildren would happily sing "Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah" with him. His happiest days were spent at the family reunions and on family vacations to Rocky Point, where he would play in the pool and the ocean with his grandchildren. Ralph and Alice's home was open to all and considered to be "party central." The celebrations were always lively.

Ralph's life work as an educator, school superintendent and fierce advocate for children. He was Korean War Veteran adn believed deeply in serving his country and his community. He community service included membership in the Rotary Club of Tempe adnd Tempe Diplomats. As a result of his life of service he received the Don Carlos Humanitarian Award and the City of Tempe MLK Diversity Award. He was also an active member of Tempe Sister Cities, and he and Alice received the Distinguished Circle of Volunteers award.

During his retirement he traveled the world with Alice and his dear friends. One of his most special trips was to China with his grandson, Brice. Ralph developed an international circle of friends, all of whom would make sure they visited him when they were in Arizona. Donations to Tempe Diablos "Excellence in Education Program" recognizing teachers in the Tempe Elementary School District in the name of Dr. Ralph Goitia, can be made by check or the link below.

Donations made by check can be mailed to Tempe Diablos Charities-Ralph Goitia, P.O. Box 13246, Tempe, AZ 85284-005 or online at:

Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Saturday, October 23, 2021 at 9:30 AM at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Catholic Church, 2121 South Rural Road, Tempe, Arizona. Private burial services will immediately follow the funeral mass at Double Butte Cemetery, Tempe, Arizona. Richardson Funeral Home, Tempe, Arizona is compassionately serving the Goitia family.

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Mass of Christian Burial

Our Lady of Mount Carmel Catholic Church

Saturday October 23rd, 2021


Tempe, AZ


Double Buttes Cemetery

Saturday October 23rd, 2021

Tempe, AZ

Special Instructions: Burial will be private

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