John M. “Mitch” Lasgoity ’52 was born on April 11, 1930, to Jean Lasgoity and Jennie Ospital Lasgoity. Mitch was raised on the family 40-acre ranch south of the town of Madera, California, with his parents, maternal grandmother, and two bachelor uncles who spoke to him in Basque. Thus he grew up bilingual with two mother tongues. Under the tutelage of his parents and uncles, Mitch learned and never lost his love for farming and animal husbandry. He attended Alpha School, Madera High School, and SCU from which he graduated with a degree in business in 1952. Upon graduation, he became partners with his father in their sheep business and took over the farming of their 40 acres. Eventually, Mitch bought the sheep from his father and became self-employed at the age of 27. He married Rosemary Mastrofini in 1957 and together they expanded their farming interests, grew their sheep business, and began to run cattle in Madera County. Through his commitment to work, his intelligence, and his curiosity, Mitch developed and enjoyed many close relationships and had many friends. He was a member of St. Joachim’s Catholic Church, Knight’s of Columbus, Rotary, Fresno Basque Club, and Rancheros Visitadores. He served as Camp Captain of Campo Seco and as a board director for Rancheros Visitadores. Mitch was honored as Madera County Cattleman of the Year in 2006 and Senior Farmer of the Year in 2017. He passed away on June 26, 2019, surrounded by family. Mitch was preceded in death by his parents, Jean and Jennie Lasgoity. He is survived by his wife of 61 years, Rosemary, and his children, Michele Lasgoity ’82 and husband Mark Peters, Monica Lasgoity ’80 and husband Jeff LeFors, John E. Lasgoity and wife Alyson, and James Lasgoity ’86. He is also survived by his grandchildren, Christine Peters ’16 and Eric Peters ’18, Julia, Claire, Paul, and Elise Lasgoity, and brother-in-law and sister-in-law Roger and Laurel Mastrofini Belden.


22 Aug 2019