Steven ‘Gopher’ Mestas

Mestas Enlarge photo


Former Durango resident Steven Mestas died of liver cancer Tuesday, Feb. 14, 2012, in Albuquerque. He was 53.

Known as “Gopher,” he was born to Ernest and Margarita Mestas on April 13, 1958, in Durango. He was one of 10 children and grew up here. He lived most of his life in Durango.

Mr. Mestas was a jack-of-all-trades.

In the mid-1980s, he married Genevive Gurule in Durango. The marriage later ended in divorce.

He loved working on cars, fishing at the lake and making music. He was well-known as a musician in the area, playing with the band the Archuleta Boys.

“His friends said he could ‘make his guitar sing,’” said his daughter, Clarissa Soto. “He was a funny guy, well-known in Durango and very caring.”

Mr. Mestas is survived by his daughter, Clarissa Soto, of Durango; sons Robert Mestas of Durango and Steven Mestas of Albuquerque; brothers Richard “Guy” Mestas of Durango, David Mestas of Albuquerque and Gerald “Little Gopher” Mestas of Bloomfield, N.M.; sisters Liz Gonzales of Bloomfield and Stella “Lola” Vasquez of Hotchkiss; companion of 15 years, Candy Pineda, of Albuquerque; three grandchildren; and numerous nieces and nephews.

At his request, no service will be held.