Family of former governor sues UArizona over his former home 

Apr 10, 2023, 4:25 AM

(AP Photo/Arizona Daily Star, Kelly Presnell)...

(AP Photo/Arizona Daily Star, Kelly Presnell)

(AP Photo/Arizona Daily Star, Kelly Presnell)

TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) — The family of Arizona’s only Hispanic governor is suing the University of Arizona over an alleged breach of contract for trying to sell his home in Nogales.

The family of Raúl Hector Castro donated the home to the university several years ago for a specific use, the Arizona Daily Star reported. A complaint filed in Santa Cruz County Superior Court challenges the university’s decision to sell the house rather than use it as a headquarters for border studies initiatives as planned.

The lawsuit states that the home holds more than monetary value for the Castro family.

“Specifically, the Castro family enjoyed the home for two decades and, upon Raúl’s death, wanted the Castro home to be dedicated to supporting Arizonans and the Santa Cruz County community,” the lawsuit says.

Castro served more than two years as Arizona’s first and only Mexican-American governor during the 1970s before resigning to serve as ambassador to Argentina. He also served as an ambassador to Bolivia and El Salvador.

In 2003, he and his wife, Patricia Castro, purchased and moved into the home in Nogales near the U.S.-Mexico border.

Castro died in 2015. After his death, the lawsuit says, the university approached the Castro family about headquartering its emerging border studies initiatives at the two-story house.

If the university sold the home, the lawsuit says the family “will suffer irreparable injury which are not remediable by compensatory damages.”

The university and the board of regents have declined to comment specifically on the pending litigation.

The university announced in February that was unable to raise enough money to restore and convert the historic property into a publicly accessible university-run border center.

University spokeswoman Pam Scott said that when the school first took ownership of the property in 2016, it estimated the project to cost $600,000. When the COVID pandemic disrupted supply chains, that estimate ballooned to $1.2 million on the low end and up to $2.6 million if both floors of the house were converted.

As for the money already raised — about $275,000 — the university had said each donor could choose either a refund or to add it to a scholarship fund named for Castro.

Net proceeds from the sale of the home would go to the scholarship fund, which benefits students in the Center for Latin American Studies who are studying international relations or local politics.

The Castro family is seeking an injunction to keep the university from selling the home and ultimately rescission of the 2016 agreement.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

Gas prices are on the decline in Arizona. (Photo by Brandon Bell/Getty Images)...

Danny Shapiro

Arizona gas prices on the fall heading into Memorial Day weekend

Arizona drivers will get the benefit of decreasing gas prices heading into Memorial Day weekend.

23 minutes ago

Surprise man killed his two children in murder-suicide, police say...

Serena O'Sullivan

Surprise father killed his 2 children in murder-suicide, police say

A Surprise man killed his two children in an apparent murder-suicide on May 20, 2024, according to police.

1 hour ago

(Inciweb Photo)...

Firefighters gain some containment of Wildcat Fire burning north of Phoenix

Firefighters had a breakthrough Monday in containing the Wildcat Fire that has been burning north of Phoenix for days.

3 hours ago

Rudy Giuliani bankruptcy filing defamation lawsuit...

Associated Press

Ex-NYC Mayor Rudy Giuliani, Arizona’s Kelli Ward plead not guilty in fake elector case

Giuliani appeared remotely for the arraignment that was held in a Phoenix courtroom. His trial will take place in October.

3 hours ago


KTAR Video

Video: What can we do to prevent drownings during the Arizona summer?

What can we do to prevent drownings during the Arizona summer? Jim Sharpe talks about recent drownings in Arizona on his Sharper Point commentary. Video: Jeremy Schnell and Felisa Cárdenas/KTAR News Subscribe to the KTAR Daily Newsletter: Read articles from KTAR News: Download the KTAR app: Sign up for texts from KTAR: […]

4 hours ago

Follow @ktar923...

Sponsored Content by Sanderson Ford

3 new rides for 3 new road trips in Arizona

It's time for the Sanderson Ford Memorial Day sale with the Mighty Fine 69 Anniversary, as Sanderson Ford turned 69 years old in May.

Sponsored Articles


Condor Airlines

Condor Airlines can get you smoothly from Phoenix to Frankfurt on new A330-900neo airplane

Adventure Awaits! And there's no better way to experience the vacation of your dreams than traveling with Condor Airlines.



Desert Institute for Spine Care is the place for weekend warriors to fix their back pain

Spring has sprung and nothing is better than March in Arizona. The temperatures are perfect and with the beautiful weather, Arizona has become a hotbed for hikers, runners, golfers, pickleball players and all types of weekend warriors.


Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Day & Night is looking for the oldest AC in the Valley

Does your air conditioner make weird noises or a burning smell when it starts? If so, you may be due for an AC unit replacement.

Family of former governor sues UArizona over his former home