12/30/2018 - Bakersfield, CA, USA
September 21, 1942 - December 30, 2018
Frank Jean Maitia Jr. passed away peacefully on December 30, 2018, surrounded by his family, after a prolonged fight with Parkinson's. He was 76 years old.
Frank was born in Bakersfield, California on September 21, 1942. He was raised by his father Frank Jean Maitia Sr. and mother, Louise Amestoy Maitia. He lived a remarkable life centered around the restaurant business. At a young age, he entertained patrons by playing the accordion in the lounge of his family's restaurant, the Basque Cafe on 21st street. Later he and his father operated the Basque Cafe until 1980, at which time they went on to build a grand, beautiful restaurant on Union Ave. called, Maitia's Basque. Frank was a hard working man and enjoyed preparing delectable Basque food for the people. He was very involved in the Basque community and served as a member of the board of directors for the Basque Club. His children and grandchildren still remain active members of the Basque Club. Many Memorial Day weekends were spent celebrating his Basque heritage, dancing and drinking pican punches at the Basque picnic.
He attended Guadalupe Elementary, St. Joseph's, Garces, and Bakersfield College. He then joined the Marines and was part of the 29 Palms. During his time in the Marines Frank met and married the love of his life, Susan Strickler Maitia. Frank was always proud of his time served. Frank had a huge heart and a passion to give. Frank was a long time Garces supporter, sending all three of his children to Garces and feeding endless Garces football players and families throughout the years! His allegiance to Garces became well-known as he was inducted into the Garces Hall of Honor in 2017. Frank was very involved with various community organizations whether it was Bob Elias, Ducks Unlimited, Bakersfield College, East Bakersfield Progressive Club or sponsoring youth athletic teams. He fed countless meals to teams of all ages and was well-known for his generosity.
Frank loved both watching and participating in sports. He was an accomplished bowler and golfer. He bowled several perfect games and spent many Saturdays out at Rio Bravo Country Club playing golf with friends and family. His golf tournaments became legendary within the local golfing community. They brought together many professional and amateur players from the area to compete for prize money and bragging rights. Those tournaments are still talked about today and remembered fondly. His children, and later his grandchildren's sporting events were always the highlight of his week. He was their #1 fan.
He was a kind, generous, and humble man whose life centered around his family and many friends. Frank was preceded in death by his parents Frank Jean Maitia Sr. and Louise Amestoy Maitia. Left to cherish his memory are his wife of 54 years, Susan Maitia; daughter, Elizabeth and husband Chet Mebane; son, Frank Maitia III and wife Kellee Maitia; daughter Nicole and husband Jason Rebuck; grandchildren, Frank Jean Maitia IV, Jonah Megahey, Trenton Rebuck, Marco Maitia, Nixon Rebuck, Lola Rebuck, and Emma Mebane.
Thank you for the overwhelming love, prayers and support from family and friends. We have been so blessed. We would also like to extend a gracious thank you to the staff at Evergreen for caring for our beloved "Papa Frank."
A Memorial Mass will be held on Tuesday, January 8, 2019 at St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church at 1:00 p.m. Please join us in celebrating Frank's life. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations are made to Garces Memorial High School or the Alzheimer's Disease Association of Kern County.
(published in Bakersfield Californian, Legacy.com from Jan. 5 to Jan. 6, 2019)