East Rockaway School District will posthumously induct Frank Pignataro into its Community Hall of Fame on March 27. The ceremony will take place during East Rockaway Junior-Senior High School’s Spring Sports Tip Off night at 7:30 p.m. in the school’s auditorium. Each year, the district recognizes community members who have contributed to the good of the community and schools. 

Frank Pignataro and his family moved to East Rockaway in 1983. Shortly after his move, he began coaching baseball for St. Raymond’s CYO. He also became active on the St. Raymond School Board, as well as the St. Raymond Carnival. Frank showed devotion to his parish community by joining the Monsignor Walsh Council of the Knights of Columbus, where he remained a member until his death. He also served as a Eucharistic minister, where he would visit and pray with his fellow parishioners who couldn’t attend mass.

In the 1990s, Frank applied to be the Village’s Recreation Director when Jerry Chapel retired. He recognized that this was a great opportunity to better the lives of East Rockaway’s youth, and instill the important qualities of sportsmanship and fair-play in all activities. He was chosen from a qualified pool of candidates to lead the Recreation Department, where he held the position for twelve years. During his tenure, he partnered with community leaders including Frank Honerkamp and John Johnson to help strengthen the local CYO and Recreation basketball programs. Frank, along with Rick Cardus and Larry Parshian started the first flag-football program in East Rockaway. Frank was integral, assisting with and implementing the vision of James Mammes and many other volunteers, who started what is now the East Rockaway baseball league.
Inspired by his sister-in-law Joan, Frank started the East Rockaway Recreation PALS program that arranged get-togethers for special needs adults. He expected that everyone who coached, participated or watched the games knew that while winning was important — it was secondary to sportsmanship.  

In 2015, Frank would once again step up for the Village of East Rockaway, when he accepted the position as director of the Senior Center. He always wanted the best for everyone. He treated everyone with kindness and always greeted them with a smile. Frank Pignataro loved East Rockaway almost as much as he loved his family, and we know that love was infinite.

The district hopes the community will join the recognition ceremony to honor Frank’s life and his family.