Richard Novoa, Jr., died Feb. 10, 2011, of complications related to the 2005 liver transplant that had saved his life.
Mr. Novoa, 59, was owner of the Sacramento Gold semi-pro soccer team, which finished its first season with a championship last July in the National Premier Soccer League. The team played its home games at River City High School.
Mr. Novoa also wrote a sports column, “The Sports Insider,” for the News-Ledger for many years until illness interrupted the column late last year.
He shared his love of sports – including pro baseball and football – with his family. Mr. Novoa graduated from Washington High School in West Sacramento and attended Sacramento State. His career included ownership of a sporting goods store in the 1980s, work for several state departments and his firm “Aztec Promotions,” which promoted events and served as a travel agency. He served on the Access Sacramento board, the Cal Expo Advisory Council, and he helped return professional boxing to the State Fair. He was inducted into the Mexican American Sports Hall of Fame in 2009.
In 2005, a liver infection threatened his life. But his wife, Joyce Novoa, donated part of her liver in a transplant operation, helping to extend his life.
“Rich was an energetic and positive force,” said Steve Marschke, editor of the News-Ledger. “It was wonderful to see him have such success with his new soccer team last year.”
Besides his wife, Joyce, Mr. Novoa is survived by daughters Richelle, of Sacramento; Deanna Ahloo, of Utah; and Adrianna Novoa-Villanueva and Aleesa Bojorques, of West Sacramento; by son Richard, of West Sacramento; by mother, Gertrude, of West Sacramento; brother Wayne, of Sacramento; half-brother Michael, of Woodland; half-sister Michelle Novoa-Castillo, of Sacramento, and by nine grandchildren.
Keep the Drive Alive by donating to the “Richard Novoa – Sacramento Gold” Memorial Fund at any Safe Credit Union