Ava Arpaio, wife of former Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio has died after her battle with cancer, according to MCSO.
MCSO says Ava died Saturday at 89-years-old after she was diagnosed with cancer in early 2016. She was surrounded by family. She is survived by her husband, Joe, daughter, Sherry, son, Rocco, and four grandchildren.
Former Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio spoke Sunday following Ava’s passing.
“I’m not feeling very well. I’ve been married to my wife for 63 years we just celebrated our 63rd years of marriage on December 22. She’s been the love of my life, she’s always supported and defended me doing my 57 years in law enforcement, and she’s always made sure that our two children and I were always happy,” said Arpaio.
“I know the people around the country loved her. And stood by my wife over the years and even the former President Trump called my wife several times when she was fighting cancer,” added Arpaio.
“I know she’s in heaven, and I’ll never forget her. And it’s very difficult for me to talk but, a lot of people didn’t like me but a very proud of the fact they liked my wife,” said Arpaio.
Ava met Joe as a young woman after she moved to Washington D.C. in search of a job. Joe was working as a D.C. police officer. They married a year later in a Catholic church in Mexico City.
After Joe began working for the Bureau of Narcotics, which later became the Drug Enforcement Administration, the couple moved 14 times in 28 years, living in Illinois, Turkey, Maryland, Mexico, Massachusetts, Texas and finally Arizona. Joe Arpaio says she was alongside him throughout almost his whole life in law enforcement.
“My wife would do anything for me, we lived in Turkey and Mexico, South America when I was head of the federal drug enforcement. She even helped me on my cases that whatever I needed she would do it and but she was just a beautiful person in and out and she supported me,” said Arpaio.
The Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office said in a statement Sunday that it “sends heartfelt condolences to the family and loved ones of Ava Arpaio after she lost her battle with cancer earlier today. May she Rest In Peace. Our sincerest condolences to former Sheriff Joe Arpaio.”