Part-time Provincetown resident Frank J. Pantano died suddenly on Dec. 20, 2020 at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. The cause was still unknown at press time. He was 65.
Born in Quincy on June 18, 1955 to Joseph R. Pantano and Virginia L. (Bussolini) Pantano, Frank was the oldest sibling of a large and loving family, generous of spirit and rich in faith.
His biggest passion was teaching, having worked for more than 40 years in the Boston public school system, often going the extra distance for disadvantaged students. “He was in a lot of schools, because he mentored new teachers,” his sister, Janice Maitino, told the Independent. He served tirelessly at the Gay Lesbian Straight Education Network (GLSEN) to ensure that students had a safe and supportive experience.
He was predeceased by his parents and his husband of 37 years, Edward M. Conroy, who died in 2015. They divided their time between their homes on Dwight Street in the South End of Boston and on Bradford Street in Provincetown.
Frank lived to serve others and was always raising his hand to volunteer. Over the course of his life, he made many beautiful friendships among colleagues, South End neighbors, and in Provincetown. Frank also established connections around the world through his frequent travels in the U.S. and Europe, as well as in Cuba, Puerto Rico, and, most recently, Colombia, where he met Edwin Barranco, the second love of his life.
He was always traveling — as a student and a tour guide, during the years his husband, Eddie, worked for Sabena, and in the 10 years Frank worked at Cape Air.
He was a wonderful cook and it brought him great joy to gather his friends and family to share a meal that he had prepared. He was the one who connected all sides of his family and groups of friends. A walk with Frank through Provincetown was an experience. He knew everyone and took the time to see how they were all doing. “I used to call him the mayor of Provincetown,” his sister said.
Frank had a green thumb and kept his property like a botanical garden. At his frequent outdoor dinners, friends and family would admire the flowers and lawn, and the sheer beauty of his Bradford Street home.
He was a force of nature, never allergic to hard work. His friends and family are grateful for his witness, his indomitable spirit, and the love he so freely shared.
Frank is survived by his siblings, John P. Pantano of Weymouth; Paul R. Pantano and wife Patricia of Braintree; and Janice M. Maitino and husband Paul of Oklahoma City, Okla. and Provincetown.
Given the limitations of these times, a liturgy in celebration of Frank’s life will take place in the summer. A scholarship will also be established in his name for future teachers to carry on his legacy. In the meantime, arrangements are being made by Sweeney Brothers Home for Funerals, in Quincy. The family asks for prayers and remembrances by visiting thesweeneybrothers.com or calling 617-472-6344.