The MTD is sad to report the passing of retired Executive Secretary-Treasurer Frank Pecquex on February 15 following a decades-long battle with Parkinson’s disease. He was 75 years old.
The New York-native served in that position from 1993 until his retirement in 2011, having held that post longer than anyone else in the department’s 74-year history.
“Frank was a devoted union man,” recalled MTD President Michael Sacco. “His whole career was in the Labor Movement. He worked hard to improve the lives of others. He will truly be missed.”
Pecquex, an Army reservist during the Vietnam era, began his long career within the Labor Movement as a teenager working at an A&P supermarket bakery, joining the (now) Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers International Union. In 1964, he was a member of the Amalgamated Transit Union as a ticket-taker for Greyhound as the World’s Fair in New York City.
He graduated from St. John’s University in Queens, NY, with a master’s in history. (He remained a loyal alumnus throughout his life.)
Pecquex’s association with maritime started in October 1967 when he was hired by the Seafarers International Union, working as a researcher in the union’s old Brooklyn headquarters. He went on to do administrative work and organizing before going to the union’s manpower department. While there, he formulated a plan to encourage and facilitate continuing education and upgrading for the members.
One other thing happened while he worked at the Brooklyn hall – he met his future wife, Linda, who was a secretary for then SIU (and MTD) President Paul Hall. The couple married in 1973.
In 1980, the union transferred him to Washington, DC, to work for its legislative team. Five years later, Pecquex became the legislative director for both the SIU and the MTD.
In 1991, he was promoted to MTD administrator. He became the executive secretary-treasurer upon the retirement of Jean Ingrao.
He spearheaded the department’s transformation of its monthly printed newsletter to an online website.
“I worked directly with Frank for 11 years at the MTD after knowing him since 1989 when I began working in the SIU communications office,” stated current Executive Secretary-Treasurer Daniel Duncan. “He remembered that the money within the department came from members’ dues. He made sure none of us forgot who we worked for.
“I smile recalling his love for the New York baseball teams, the New York Jets and his St. John’s Redmen. He knew the school had updated its nickname to Red Storm, but they were always his Redmen,” added Duncan.
Besides his wife of 46 years, Linda, he is survived by his three children – Genevieve, Andrew and Courtney – and three grandchildren – Katherine, Victoria and James.
A viewing for Brother Pecquex will be held 1-3 pm and 6-8 pm, Thursday, February 20, at the Fairfax Memorial Funeral Home (9902 Braddock Road, Fairfax VA 22032). A memorial mass will be offered at 1 pm, Friday, February 21, at St. Timothy’s Catholic Church (13809 Poplar Tree Road, Chantilly VA 20151).