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Motocross Legend John Desoto
The Civil War was the most destructive conflict in our nation’s history. It left a nationwide legacy of grief and bitterness that continues to this day.
In DeSoto County, Mississippi, families still remember those who lost their lives during that war. They also tell of the families who struggled for years to get their loved ones back home after the war.
Early Life and Education
De Soto’s early life was a story of exploration and adventure. As a conquistador, he explored South and Central America in search of wealth and treasure.
His daring and ruthless tactics led to the enslavement of indigenous people. He later became a governor of Cuba and one of Spain’s most successful conquistadors.
In 1532, de Soto aided Spanish conquistador Francisco Pizarro on his expedition to conquer Peru. During this trip, de Soto and his men explored the eastern portion of Florida.
Today, research shows that the first eight years of a child’s life are critical to their growth and development. These years are when brain connections are at their highest.
A two-time national motocross champion and the first American to represent the US in the 250cc World GP circuit, john desoto was an incredibly competitive motocross racer. He competed for a variety of brands including Montesa, CZ, Suzuki, Kawasaki and Ossa.
Aside from his storied professional career, he also served as a Honolulu city councilman for four years. He also founded the Hawai’i Motorsports Association. He also authored several books on motorcycle racing.
Achievements and Honors
DeSoto earned considerable recognition as a motocross pioneer and was inducted into the American Motorcycle Heritage Foundation’s Hall of Fame this week in Ohio. It is a testament to his accomplishments that so many of those who attended the event turned out in support of his efforts on behalf of his home state.
One of the proverbial defining moments in his life came on a day in February 1993. That night, his 20-year-old son had a rough breakup and was suicidal.
After hearing his story, he decided to quit his job and devote himself full time to his family and the cause. That was the beginning of his public-spirited endeavors through Na Kama Kai, a non-profit organization that provides ocean safety and conservation programs to Hawaii’s youth.
To everyone who grew up in Hawaii’s motocross heyday of the 1970s, John “Cobra” Desoto is one of our living legends. His competitive style was legendary, and his go-for-broke approach to motocross racing set him apart from the pack.
A devoted family man, he stayed active in the community and gave back to his native home. He served on the Honolulu City Council for four years and was inducted into the AMA Hall of Fame.
He was also a lifetime collector who was passionate about preserving the past. He surrounded himself with personal and political possessions from Hawaiian Ali’i, including stacks of old documents and photos.
A former motocross champion, John Desoto has an estimated net worth of $40 million. He is also an architect, and his work reflects his pursuit of relationships between functional space and artistic expression. He has also been active in protecting Kahoolawe.
As a real estate broker, John has represented many prominent developers and has negotiated the sale of numerous premier new development sites in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. His most notable projects include Arlington Highlands Shopping Center, a 750,000-square-foot retail development in the Park Cities that was recognized as The Best New Retail Development in DFW in 2006. He is a member of The Texas ICSC Developer’s Showcase. He is also involved in a number of charitable organizations, including Habitat for Humanity, The Tarrant County Food Bank Can Food Drive, Cystic Fibrosis, St. Michael’s and All Angels Episcopal Church, and the Episcopal School of Dallas.