Frank Diaz Hello, my name is Linda and I am Frank's niece. Even saying Frank is foreign to me because I always called him Uncle Frankie (or my favorite name for him was Pinto). He had many nicknames some were George, Pinto, Pinto bean, Bone (short for Buneto) and Tutti. Frankie was born on May 3, 1945 and was 69 years old when he passed away and is now with our Lord in Heaven. He was born at home in Montebello on Greenwood Street in a small house right before you get to Telegraph Ave. His dad's name was Luz Diaz and his mom's name is Jessie. My beautiful amazing grandmother Jessie is here with us today and just...
Hello, my name is Linda and I am Frank's niece. Even saying Frank is foreign to me because I always called him Uncle Frankie (or my favorite name for him was Pinto). He had many nicknames some were George, Pinto, Pinto bean, Bone (short for Buneto) and Tutti.
Frankie was born on May 3, 1945 and was 69 years old when he passed away and is now with our Lord in Heaven. He was born at home in Montebello on Greenwood Street in a small house right before you get to Telegraph Ave.
His dad's name was Luz Diaz and his mom's name is Jessie. My beautiful amazing grandmother Jessie is here with us today and just recently celebrated her 102nd birthday (she is seated right there).
Frankie has 1 older brother Raymond, 2 older sisters Anita and Eva. His wife Grace is here today along with 3 of his 4 children, Tracy, Ricky and Jesse-Frank Jr. could not be here with us today. I would also like to recognize Chela Munduia as his adopted daughter she went to go live with Frankie and Grace when she was 14 years old after her parents died and has always had a special place in Frankie's heart. She is here today as well with her husband and 3 kids.
My Uncle Frankie also has 2 beautiful grandchildren Lily who is 10 and Sophia who is 8. Frankie lived in Simmons before his dad Luz and my Uncle Pete build both their homes on Date Street in Montebello. My Grandpa Luz loved to work on cars and that is where Frankie developed a love for cars. I still remember seeing Frankie and his dad working together outside with their overalls on, working on cars together, sometimes they would go next door to my Uncle Pete's house to borrow tools or just take a break and talk to my uncle and our cousins.
One of Frankie's 1st cars was his yellow 1969 Z-28 Camaro that he re-built himself and raced at the Irwindale Speedway. He actually won a trophy for pt place and was very proud of his car. Frankie attended Greenwood Elementary school then proceeded to Montebello Jr. High and graduated from Montebello High School. He then went on to graduate from Trade Tech L.A. as an Auto Mechanic. Even though he was a great mechanic he eventually got a job as a truck driver for Van Waters & Rodgers that later became Univar and worked there for 43 years. I remember that he would gladly take anyone who wanted to go on a road trip with him in his semi-truck. He took just about all of his nieces and nephews at one time or another with him, me Monica, Steven and his god son Eddie Jr., and as I found out last night he even snuck in Carlos for a free ride. He loved all of us so much and really enjoyed our company.
When I was around 7 me and my sister Monica went to go live with my grandparents for the school year and then would go stay with Grandpa, Grandma, Aunt Eva and Uncle Frankie every summer.
He always treated us with genuine love and care. He would take me and my sister Monica to the park in the summer to hear the Battle of the Bands at Montebello Park, take us to the plunge to go night swimming, let us pick special marbles from his marble collection, give us rides on his motorcycle (when my mom or grandma weren't around of course) and pretty much spoil us with ice cream and sodas. One special memory that I have is when I was sixteen I was chosen to be on the Homecoming Court in High school. My dad had a phobia about going out in public and couldn't escort me. Frankie said don't worry I'll take you Lint (that was his nickname for me). And he did! That meant so much to me, that's how big his heart was. I remember how jealous some of my friends were when they saw him, one girl said "WOW your dad is cute!!"
When Frankie would get ready to go out to meet up with his friends like Eddie, Frank A. Ralph or Reuben, my Grandma Jessie would ask him "Where are you going?" and he would always give her the same answer, I'm just going around the block!" My grandma would get so irritated with that answer and he loved to tease her and give her the same answer all of the time!! Of course, that block was pretty big because he would stay out for hours sometimes!
His passion was for car racing and he loved to watch Nascar, along with his favorite football teams the Rams and the Raiders. In September of 1974 he married Grace Molina and they lived in Pico Rivera for many years while raising their 4 children. He was devoted to all of his children and was actively involved when his boys played sports like football or baseball and never missed a game. His love and pride for his children was openly displayed and everyone could see it.
The hospitality that both Frankie and Grace displayed was very evident as their home was the place to be whenever there was a birthday, party or celebration, when my sister Monica got married to Jim they had the ceremony and reception at their house on Lindsey Street. Frankie and Grace both loved to travel and take vacations. The more the merrier, they seldom went alone but loved to go with friends, their kids and as many family members as possible. Some of the places that they would like to go were Mexico City, camping, cruises, and often would go to Casa Grandes in Chichuaa Mexico to stay on Grace's dad ranch.
Everyone here has special memories of Frankie, special memories that are etched in our minds forever. We are sad and it is painful to see him gone, healing will take time but I know that I will see my Pinto again. I will see him when our Heavenly Father calls me and says it is time to come home. That comforts me to know that I will be reunited with my loved ones that have gone before me, my brother Tee and my sweet sister Monica to just name a few.
In the Bible in the book of Revelation it says in chapter 21 verse 4: "And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes, there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away." On behalf of the Diaz family I would like to thank you for joining us today.
Last letter written to Frank Diaz by his son, Frankie Diaz Jr.
Frankie Jr. wanted this letter placed in his father's coffin to show his love and gratitude to his father.
To my father, my Mentor, my Best Friend
I write this letter with a heavy heart and tears in my eyes. It is hard for me to come to terms with your passing. So it is difficult to express what I am feeling. I can only have faith that I will see you again. I would have given anything in the world to be right there by your side. It pains me a lot that I was not able to because of my mistakes. Since my incarceration I have come to realize my selfish ways and how my actions effect my loved ones around me. I can truly say that I am sorry and pray that you can forgive me. I will spend my entire life trying to make it up to you. Sometimes I think why, but I already know why, other times I think how I can change things but I can't. What's done is done and I can only better myself to be the person that you knew I could be. Knowing that you believed in me is what makes me strive to change. You were always in my corner when nobody else was and because of that I am a better person today. Without your love my heart would be cold. Everything good in me has come from you. You have shown me what it takes to be a man, if I can be half the man you were I will have lived a good life. Maybe then I will have made you proud of me. You are a great man and I am lucky to be your son. You have given me the strength, wisdom, friendship, but most of all the love of a father. For that I can never repay you. I am sad you are gone, but proud that you are my father and nothing will ever change that. I love you and truly miss you Dad. You will always be in my heart and mind. You lived for your family and now we will live for you. Till we meet again Pops.