Frank Fonseca Riojas

March 24, 1945June 13, 2018
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Frank Fonseca Riojas, 73, of Smiley, Texas passed away on Wednesday, June 13, 2018 at Medical City Medical Center in Plano, Texas.

Funeral Mass is under the direction of Buffington Funeral Home in Gonzales, Texas and will be held on Saturday, June 16, 2018 at 10:00 am at Saint Philip Benizi Catholic Church in Smiley, Texas with Father Ouseph officiating. A Rosary will be recited at 9:30 am before Mass at the church. Interment will follow at Burriola Cemetery in Smiley, Texas.

Frank was born on March 24, 1945 in Nixon, Texas. He was the son of Jose Angel and Cipriana (Fonseca) Riojas. Upon graduating from high school, Frank was drafted into the US Army where he served active duty for two years and obtained the rank of SGT. He was awarded the National Defense Service Medal, Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal, Vietnam Service Medal with 2 Bronze Stars, and a Purple Heart. Upon his release from active duty, he served another four years in the US Army Reserves. He married Madalena Perales on May 2, 1970 in Smiley, Texas at Saint Philip Benizi Catholic Church. Frank liked to go fishing, and working out. He played the guitar, and was a Deacon at Saint Philip Benizi Catholic Church. He liked to play bingo, as well as calling bingo games. He did volunteer work as a translator for the schools. He was a member of the city counsel for two terms, and also a member of the Social Concerns Committee. Frank was very involved in his church, serving as President of Saint Philip Benizi Mens Club, serving on the Parrish Advisory Council, and the Supervisors Advisory Committee, as well as serving as Co-Chairman of the Ministerial Alliance.

Frank is survived by his wife; Madalena Perales Riojas, one son; Ray Riojas and his wife, Ruby of Nixon, Texas, one daughter; Rita McGough and her husband, Matt of Flower Mound, Texas, two brothers; Angelo Riojas, Jr. of Nixon, Texas, Pedro Riojas and his wife, “Mayor” Dorothy of Nixon, one sister; Irene Rodriguez of Nixon, Texas, seven grandchildren, six great-grandchildren, and numerous nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents; Jose Angel and Cipriana Riojas, and one brother; Johnny Riojas.

Pallbearers for Mr. Riojas will be; Peter Riojas, Jr., Samuel Riojas, Daniel Perales, Samuel Perales, Victor Perales, and Isaac Perales.

To join the family in celebrating Frank’s life and to offer words of comfort, please go to:

The family request memorials be made to Saint Phillip Benizi Catholic Church in Smiley, Texas, and Saint Joseph Catholic Church in Nixon, Texas in lieu of flowers.


  • Peter Riojas, Jr
  • Samuel Riojas
  • Daniel Perales
  • Samuel Perales
  • Victor Perales
  • Isaac Perales

  • Saint Philip Benizi Catholic Church
  • Saint Joseph Catholic Church


  • Rosary Saturday, June 16, 2018
  • Funeral Mass Saturday, June 16, 2018
  • Interment Saturday, June 16, 2018

Frank Fonseca Riojas

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Mary Montoya

June 16, 2018

My deepest condolences on your loss . My prayers and thoughts are with you and your family during this difficult time. May God give you strength .
Love your cousin,
Mary Montoya and Family


    When Frank Fonseca Riojas walked into the room, those in his company felt energy, an enthusiastic spontaneity. This was just one example of who Frank was and how he impacted those around him. Frank was a clever and gregarious person who always sought out the finest attributes in other people. It was as if Frank wanted to share all of their experiences, revel in their lives and celebrate their discoveries. Frank was tireless and had boundless enthusiasm that would serve him well throughout his life.

    Frank was born on March 24, 1945 at Nixon Hospital in Nixon, Texas. He was the son of Jose Angel and Cipriana Riojas. Frank was raised in Nixon, Texas. Always at the ready with a good joke, he grew up to be quite a humorous person. While some who knew Frank might describe him as an idealist, his friends and family understood well that Frank was always in pursuit of life’s endless possibilities and opportunities available to him.

    Frank was raised with four siblings. He had three brothers, Angelo, Pedro, and John, and one sister, Irene. Frank was very accepting and supportive of his family. He was perceived as the central person in his family in terms of keeping communication open between the family members. Whenever discord or tension arose within the home, Frank was typically the member who brought about resolution and harmony. These traits served Frank well in his adult life and, along with his wit, outgoing personality, and understanding of others, drew the admiration of many who knew him.

    During his high school years, Frank responded enthusiastically to any new project and was regularly in search of one adventure after another. He graduated from Nixon High School in 1964. Frank was a very good student, and generally did well in his courses. Frank absorbed as much as he could from all of his teachers and was consistently able to tackle conceptual and abstract problems, using his imagination to master his assignments. For Frank, school often became just an extension of playtime, thanks to his ability to turn just about anything into a game. Classmates considered Frank a good listener, knowing that when necessary, they could go to him to discuss just about anything.

    On May 2, 1970 Frank married Madalena Perales at Saint Philip Catholic Church of Smiley, Texas. Frank's skill at “building bridges” played an important role in his ability to make his new family happy. He was quite sensitive towards Madalena's needs, showing his constant concern and fondness. Frank was tenderhearted and sensitive, qualities that served him well in helping to nurture his family.

    Frank was a natural and creative parent who was willing to provide his family with all sorts of new and interesting experiences. For Frank, parenting was a particularly enjoyable and pleasurable part of his life. Every activity, from chores to bedtime routines, became a game in the Riojas home. Frank's skill at understanding his children's feelings, his sensitivity to their needs, and his gift for gentle persuasion enabled him to find novel solutions to any problem or situation that might crop up. Frank was blessed with two children: one son, Ray, and one daughter, Rita.

    Frank was uplifted by new ideas and was excited by life’s possibilities, traits that made him an exceptional worker. His primary occupation was with the United States Postal Service. He was employed for 27 years. Frank was enterprising, inventive and working against deadlines seemed to energize him. Frank had the uncanny ability to identify a win/win solution to just about any problem, possibly because of his gift for insight. Frank's fellow workers saw him as a supporter and a mentor.

    Frank was an Army Veteran. He was in the Infantry Division from 1965 to 1967 and then served in the US Army Reserves. Frank saw action for two years in Vietnam. Through his hard work and dedication, he achieved the rank of Sergeant. He received several awards including a National Defense Service Medal, Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal, Vietnam Service Medal w/ two Bronze Stars, Purple Heart, Sharpshooter, and the Combat Infantryman Badge. His fellow soldiers could count on him for being able to make adjustments to any situation as needed.

    Because Frank loved to have a broad variety of activities in his life, he took advantage of the opportunity to pursue numerous hobbies. His favorite pursuits were fishing, bingo,playing guitar, calling bingo, working out, volunteering as translator at the schools. Frank had a knack for being able to multi-task in order to create time for all of his favorite pastimes. However, Frank's ever-present concern for others always took precedent.

    Throughout his life, Frank was actively involved in professional and community organizations. He was compassionate, accommodating and quick to move into action. Always able to build a consensus, Frank seemed to be the person smack dab in the middle of things, working to get things done. Those who had the opportunity to work with Frank usually agreed that when you were involved in an organization with him, it was as entertaining as anything you could imagine. Throughout his later years, Frank was an active member of Saint Philip Catholic Church.

    Because Frank was constantly in the center of things and where the action was, he always seemed willing to join in and help, regularly getting involved in community activities. Frank's gift of planning and improvisation, along with a talent for rallying support, made him a great asset. Frank found new ways of getting things done in order to help make just about every activity more efficient and enjoyable. Frank was an active member of several community groups, serving on committees for Saint Philip Catholic Church and the City Counsel.

    Frank was a man who was dedicated and devoted to his faith. He was a member Saint Philip Catholic Churc for 48 years. During that time, he was a Deacon, Saint Philip Mens Club, Parrish Advisory Counsel, He was sympathetic and able to empathize with others and he used these qualities to the fullest while working tirelessly for his beliefs.

    Frank's love of improvising in his daily life was a perfect fit for his enjoyment of traveling. His favorite vacations were ones that were not planned. Traveling in a casual manor fit his personality well. Excited about seeing changing scenery and constantly looking for the enjoyment life could offer, Frank took his vacations seriously, well, as seriously as he possibly could. Favorite vacations included going fishing.

    When Frank's retirement finally came in 2005, Frank handled it the way he usually did. He adapted and, like everything in his life, made it satisfying. Because he was such a flexible person and able to adjust to any situation, retirement was just another enjoyable change of pace for Frank to master. Even in retirement, Frank continued to stay in touch with his old friends and like always, made plenty of new ones.

    Frank Riojas passed away on June 13, 2018 at Medical City in Plano, Texas. Frank had an accident. He is survived by his wife, Madalena, his children, Ray and Rita, seven grandchildren, six great-grandchildren, his brothers,Angelo and Pedro and his sister, Irene. Services were held at Saint Philip Catholic Church. Frank was laid to rest in Burriola Cemetery in Smiley, Texas.

    There was always a certain style and inventiveness to Frank. He was a dynamic, self-expressive person who was forever looking to celebrate the endless possibilities life had to offer. He had a knack for being clever, creative and witty, and for others, was a joy to be around. While he was often fiercely independent, it seemed as if many others looked to Frank Riojas for inspiration, leadership, wisdom and even courage. Frank was always more than willing to share life’s experiences with his loved ones.