Frank Layana (85), died May 31st in Pattaya, Thailand
A Catholic Mass and Service was held on Friday, June 5th at St. Nikolaus Catholic Church in Pattaya, Thailand
July 2, 2020
Frank was born September 15th 1934 in Los Angeles, California to Herman and Hortense Layana. He grew up in the Los Angeles area and attended Loyola high school, where he exceled in Football and Baseball. He was a First Team All-American and twice earned first team All CIF in football, and also was a two time first team All CIF player in baseball. In 1951, under the coaching legend Benny Lefebvre, Frank helped lead the Crenshaw Post 715 American Legion baseball team to a World Series championship in New York, He was privileged to have played with future baseball stars in the neighborhood. His teammates included Sparky Anderson, Billy Consolo, Paul Schulte, Bill Lachemann, Joe Maguire, Carl Maggio and others. On occasion, the bat boy for the team was Benny's son, Jim Lefebvre, a future LA Dodger Rookie of the Year.
After high school, despite many scholarship offer to Division I schools, Frank opted to sign a lucrative contract with the Chicago White Sox organization and began his baseball career in Waterloo, Iowa. The money he earned from White Sox contract allowed him to buy his parents a property for their automotive business to help thank them for their support. During his baseball career, he was an excellent pitcher, outfielder, and hitter, and in 1954, although he put up some impressive statistics, and was on the brink of being called up to the majors, he opted to end his baseball dream and go home to settle down with his family. Major League Baseball was certainly not as high paying in the 1950's as it is today, so getting off the road and returning home to his young family was his priority.
It was during his high school years when he met his future wife Carol Malloy (St. Mary's Academy). They started raising their family in Westchester, California, but on a fluke, Frank came across a home in Culver City, across from Lindberg Park, where the owners were preparing to sell the house. He was fond of Lindberg Park since he had played Cub-scout baseball at the park during his childhood, and immediately bought the house, unbeknownst to Carol! He felt his growing family would enjoy the neighborhood and the recreation facilities the park offered, and hence, "Layanaland" was born!
Under the initial guidance and mentorship of his father in law, Emmett Malloy, Frank started his career in the construction Industry. He worked on major projects all over Southern California, and provided for his growing family with long hours and hard work in the Southern California sun. He was a longtime member of the Operating Engineers Union, and later in his career, he worked on major projects around the world.
In his later years, Frank was a devoted Parishioner at St. Nikolaus Catholic Church in Pattaya, Thailand. He routinely donated his time and charity to the Father Ray Foundation in Pattaya, and spent many years volunteering as an English teacher. It is worth noting that Father Ole, who helped conduct his burial Mass, was one of his first students at the Father Ray Foundation.
Frank is preceded in death by his wife, Carol Malloy-Layana, and his sons, Stephen, Timothy (Tracey), Michael, and Matthew, and his sister Gloria Layana-Aramendia.
Surviving family includes his sister, Anita Maisterrena, and his children Melinda Toth-Layana (Tom), Nick Layana (Sandi), Nancy Affinito-Layana (Tony), and John Layana (Jamie). Grandchildren Caroline, Nicole, Kelsie, Collin, Gina, Nicholas, Jenna, Kyle, Amy, and Carley. Great Grandchildren Curtis, Penny-Rae, Riley, Emmett, Nolan, and Nathaniel.
In lieu of flowers, donations in Frank's honor should be made to the Father Ray Foundation.