Frank died on Saturday.
Every Sunday for at least 5 years, Frank would meet his sister Rose at the place where I used to work. Taking the train from Saugus, Rose, who barely reached 5 ft and always kept her purse under the arm, would slowly walk down the ramp, say hello to us and then take a seat by the rest rooms.
Twenty minutes later, just off the Red Line train from Quincy, Frank would come down the ramp, wearing his red suspenders, and start flirting. Frank was in his 70’s and obviously had a mental disability which gave him the demeanor of a child. He also had a cleft lip which sometimes made him difficult to understand.
I was his girlfriend and he always wanted a kiss on the cheek. Alas, I did not have his exclusive affection. There was another employee he liked and Frank always had an eye for cute, young employees, especially if they were blonde.
The visit would last 30 minutes and then Frank and Rose would shuffle off to McDonalds for lunch. Before I left the job in November, Frank didn’t look so spry and he seemed to lack the energy he once had.
Hubby, who still works at the same place, gave me the news on Sunday that Frank died and the wake would be Monday. So yesterday we drove the Matrix over to Malden to the funeral home. There was Frank looking like he did in life. Rosary beads drapped over his folded hands. Rose saw us and we chatted with her for awhile.
She pointed to the flowers arranged on either side of the casket, “Those flowers came from the CVS in Quincy and those came from the Dunkin Donuts in Wollaston.” Rose told us that we just missed the Mayor of Quincy who came to pay his respects. Frank always told the Mayor how to run the city. With the Mayor were three Quincy police officers who gave the family a Quincy police badge. If Frank had been buried in Quincy, he would have been given a police escort. Frank’s sister-in-law pinned the badge to his jacket.
Frank was a simple soul living a simple life and that simplicity spoke volumes.