10/1/1932 – 9/10/2019
John Raymond Frontado was born on Oct. 1, 1932, in Santurce, Puerto Rico, to Juanita and Leandro. In 1945, the family came to the United States on a merchant ship, settling in Queens, New York. There, he attended Long Island City High School, learned English and prepared to enter the Navy in 1951. While on leave as an Aviation Ordnanceman in the Korean War, he returned home and met the love of his life, Christine Scott, in 1954. Following an honorable discharge in 1955, John and Christine married on Feb. 1, 1956, in Brooklyn, New York. As a honeymoon gift, they set off for California the next day with plans to only visit the Golden State but ended up loving it here so much they never returned to the east coast.
The newlyweds quickly found an apartment in Hermosa Beach and jobs at North American Aviation. John, the oldest of seven children, who was a natural born leader with a keen intellect, always had his sights set on law enforcement. He was recruited by the Hermosa Beach Police Department in 1957, where he worked for seven years before moving to the Torrance Police Department in 1964.
In 1967, John was offered the opportunity to help build Carpinteria’s first City Police Department. He encouraged best friend Kevin Eliason, who was also serving on the Torrance PD to join him in that venture. Following recruitment of five more officers, Carpinteria soon formed their first police force—known to all as the “Magnificent Seven,” led by Police Chief John Carpenter. Following Carpenter’s promotion to Sheriff of Santa Barbara, John was promoted to Chief of Police in 1970 where he proudly led the department for 17 years. Many still fondly remember the warm smiles and friendly waves from our city’s police officers as they patrolled our community. They were always at the ready to help and support the citizens of our town and Carpinterians felt a deep closeness and respect for each and every member of the department. In 1987, John retired at age 55. He spent much of his time camping, fishing, golfing, playing with grandchildren and donating his time as a Lions Club and Elks Club member and volunteering at the Therapeutic Riding Academy.
John will always be respected as one of Carpinteria’s cherished leaders. His steadfast commitment to our community will forever be remembered and our community will be forever grateful.
John is survived by his wife, Christine Frontado; children, Jacqueline Moran (Augie) Greg Frontado (Tina Fanucchi) and Deanna Waller; grandchildren, Jacob Frontado, Ian Moran, Ryann Reynolds, Amanda Moran, Cameron Reynolds, Zachary Frontado and Braeden McDonald; great-granddaughter, Jeanette Christine; and siblings, Maria, Rose, Frankie and Ida, along with many nieces and nephews.
John was preceded in death by his niece, Teri Petruccelli, and brothers, Roy and Joey Frontado.
We are eternally grateful for the loving care he received from the staff at GranVida, Visiting Nurse and Hospice Care and Compassionate Care of Carpinteria (Hospice of Santa Barbara).
Thank you to all our friends who have helped us along this journey, our hearts are filled with comfort and gratitude.
The family asks that in lieu of flowers, donations be made to either Visiting Nurse and Hospice Care or Hospice of Santa Barbara.
Services are being planned and the family will share that information once confirmed.