Frank was born MIECZYSLAW MERES in Chicago on October 29, 1928 to Stanley and Valeria Meres, humble and hard-working Polish immigrants. And then he promptly changed his name to Frank the first chance got. He was one of six children born shortly before the Great Depression. Although life must have been very hard, his memories were filled with images of children piled on his father’s lap, the family gathered around the radio listening to The Shadow or the Lone Ranger, eating delicious food, and going to church.
Frank died peacefully at home in his sleep on July 30, 2019 at the age of 90. He is survived by his daughter Judi and her husband Tony, sister Dolores and her husband Ron, his grandson Joe and his wife Alicia, his granddaughter Stephanie and her husband Alex, and many great-grandchildren, nieces, nephews, and extended family.
In 1948 he joined the Navy and recalled with fondness traveling the world on Uncle Sam’s nickel. After leaving the Navy in 1952 he married his only love, Sophie and settled down on the southwest side of Chicago to start a family. Being unable to conceive on their own they decided to open their hearts and adopt a child sight unseen three days before the birth in 1962. They named the child after Judy Garland. Together they would teach their daughter to love and serve God, value education, work hard, and cherish time with family.
Frank had many hobbies and interests. When he wasn’t working hard on projects for his family, he loved to ride his bike, listen to music, work in the garden, take classes at the local college, fish, travel, camp, and study photography. He was such an avid photographer that he developed his own film and took such an overwhelming number of photos of his family that they nicknamed him “Flash”. He thought it was sinful to sit around and do nothing.
He often filled his Dodge Dart with daughter and cousins and headed off on many adventures. Ice fishing, kite flying, horseback riding, toboggining, driving through Morton Arboretum, the planetarium, museums, and bowling were some of his favorites. “Uncle Frankie’s Scenic Route” meant that they got a little lost, but the journey was half the fun. He loved to travel by car, boat, and plane but the train was his very favorite. Sometimes he used half of his vacation time just riding the train to and from California for a visit.
Frank had a reputation of being a humble, kind, generous, patient, and loving family man. Although he was very soft-spoken, he would come up with the occasional “zinger” due to his excellent sense of humor.
One of his constant pastimes was learning and drawing closer to his Creator. He was always searching for God (Deuteronomy 4:29). In 1994 Frank began sitting in on his daughter’s Bible study with Jehovah’s Witnesses and attending meetings at the Kingdom Hall. He continued in his own study of the Bible and learned that God’s name was Jehovah (Psalms 83:18) and many other Scriptural truths that drew him ever closer to his Heavenly Father. After he move to California in 1999 to live with his daughter and son-in-law, he continued to study the Bible and participate in spreading the Good News of God’s Kingdom in imitation of Christ Jesus. On April 30, 2005 he symbolized his dedication to Jehovah by water baptism. He lived the rest of his life faithfully serving God and was always in attendance at meetings even if it was only listening on the phone in his later years.
We look forward with joyful anticipation, as Frank did to the resurrection of the dead (ACTS 24:15) to the paradise earth where there will be no more mourning or death (Psalms 37:9-11, 29; Revelation 21:3, 4). At that time Frank will be able to relish in all his great loves…gardening, traveling, spending time with family and friends, and above all, loyally serving his loving God and Father Jehovah for all eternity.
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