Frank's Story

PUNTA GORDA, FL AND BELFAST - Frank Joseph Riposta, 85 of Punta Gorda, Florida, passed away February 28, 2016 in Belfast, Maine. He was born in Kearny, New Jersey on March 13, 1930.

Frank grew up in Kearny, graduating from Kearny High School in 1948. He attended Stevens Tech in Newark. On July 21, 1951 he married Katherine Bishop, of Millinocket, Maine. Frank was drafted into the U.S. Army on the day of his wedding rehearsal and served in Korea. He was discharged in 1953 and went to work for engineering companies in design/drafting. He and Katherine had a daughter and two sons; they lived in Union, NJ. After a tragic fire took the life of their youngest son, Andrew, they moved to Morris County with their daughter Virginia and son Mark. Raising their family in Chatham Township, they were active in Long Hill Chapel where Frank served as Sunday School Superintendent. Frank took great pleasure in having his children memorize Bible verses to guide their life. He loved church worship, Bible study and service to others. Upon retirement, from work in New Jersey, Frank and Katherine tried life in Maine for a few years to be near their son and his family, but winters convinced them to retire to Florida. Since 1994, their home was in Punta Gorda, Florida. Active in retirement, Frank enjoyed biking, walking, reading, did magic for senior citizens and youth groups, provided hospitality to foreign teachers and students, gave 1500 hours of service as a volunteer at Bayfront Hospital, assisted chaplains in visiting local prisons, and with Katherine, was an active member in Grace Presbyterian church.

Frank was predeceased by two sisters, Phyllis Russo, and Virginia Pietoso; his brothers, Joseph, Sammie, Jerry, and Louis. Frank is survived by his loving wife of 64 years, Katherine (Bishop) Riposta. He was especially proud of his children, Dr. Virginia R. Heslinga and husband Rev. Dr. Jerry Heslinga, of Ashland, VA, and Mark Riposta and wife Pamela of Belfast, Maine; his grandchildren, Joshua Heslinga and wife Christine of Montpelier, VA, Joy Heslinga of Rhode Island, Katherine Riposta and husband Jojo Oliphant of Belfast, Maine, Andrew Riposta of Port St. Lucie, Florida, and Kimberley Riposta and Allen Weaver of Belfast, Maine. He also has three great-grandchildren, Eleanor and Audrey Heslinga of Montpelier, VA, and Mya Oliphant of Belfast, Maine; as well as many beloved nieces and nephews.

Friends and family are invited to call from 2-4 p.m. with a service at 4 p.m. on Wednesday, March 2nd at Riposta Funeral Home, 182 Waldo Avenue, Belfast. Memories and condolences may be offered to the family at With thanks for their great care for Frank, those who wish may make donations in Frank's name to Waldo County Home Health & Hospice, PO Box 407, Belfast, ME 04915.
Published in Bangor Daily News
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