Obituaries

Francis "Frank" Edward Smoczynski

October 16, 1934 - January 29, 2021

Frank Smoczynski was a visionary, a pioneer, and an entrepreneur.  Francis, (Frank) Smoczynski, 86, of St. Charles, Illinois died on Friday, January 29, 2021.  He was born in Chicago on October 16, 1934, and graduated from Carl Schurz High School.  Frank and his wife Beverly were high school sweethearts, and were married on November 26, 1954, right before Frank left to serve in the U.S. Army in Germany. Much of his work there involved photography and graphic design for the 5th Loudspeaker and Leaflet Company.

When he left the service, Frank held a series of management positions where he learned more about printing and the new methods related to printing on plastic.  Frank worked on the first American Express and Diners Club cards ever produced. In 1965, after becoming an expert in all aspects of the plastics field, and after much prayer and a second mortgage on their home, Frank and Beverly decided they were ready—and eager—to establish their own business, Perfect Plastic Printing.

Frank was the definition of a self-made man.  Neither he nor Beverly attended college, but that didn’t stop them from taking risks, working hard, and ultimately building an iconic American company that continues to maintain growth and relevance as it thrives in the competitive payments industry. What started in Frank and Beverly’s garage is now one of the single largest payment card manufacturers in the world. 

While many will remember Frank for his contributions to the payment card industry, those who know him best might argue that Frank’s Catholic faith, his devotion to our Lady of Guadalupe, and his service to The Queen of the Americas Guild was at least equally important to him.  For more than 40 years, Frank demonstrated tremendous faith in Our Lady of Guadalupe, promoting awareness of her miraculous image throughout the United States.  He moved the headquarters of The Queen of Americas Guild into the offices of Perfect Plastic Printing and provided staffing to promote its mission.  For many years, Frank and Beverly took annual trips to the Basilica in Mexico City, guiding groups of pilgrims to honor Our Lady and see her miraculous image at the Basilica.  Frank and Beverly dedicated Perfect Plastic Printing to Our Lady of Guadalupe as the patron saint of the company and attributed God’s grace through Her as the source of the business’s longevity and success.

Frank is survived by his three children, Matthew Smoczynski (Suzanne), Elisa Smoczynski, and Christopher Smoczynski (Mary); siblings Richard (Carol – deceased), Florian (Louise), Terry – deceased (Penny – deceased), Maureen (John – deceased), Marilyn (Don-deceased), Gay (Steve); six grandchildren, Merri Chocola (Adam), Ryan, Hannah, Isabel, Maggie, and Amelia Smoczynski: and one great-grandchild, Mason, and one great-grandchild on the way; and many nieces and nephews.  He was a loving husband and father and source of unending support to his extended family. Frank and Beverly were known for their generosity with friends and family and their work family at Perfect Plastic Printing. 

A family only visitation will be held on Wednesday February 3, 2021 at Moss Family Funeral Home St Charles 100 S. 3rd Street from 8AM-10AM. Funeral Mass will be celebrated at St. Patrick Catholic Church 400 Cedar Street also in St. Charles. Interment will take place at Union Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the Alzheimer's Association www.alz.org/donate

Arrangements entrusted to Moss Family Funeral Home St. Charles 630-584-2000 or www.mossfuneral.com

“Years ago, when I was working in the photography dark room,” Frank said, “I prayed to God that he wouldn’t give me a job that was boring. There’s a saying that you should be careful what you ask for because you might get it. Well, I haven’t been bored for one minute since.”

Guest Book

  • Francisco LaGuardia My dearest "amigo" Frank. It was an honor to deal with such a great and noble man as you. Thank you very much for all the love you showed to our Lady of Guadalupe. As a Mexican, let me tell you that I have never met a foreign person so devoted to Her while you were Earth. This project of yours to build a center for American pilgrims to work for the people in need down here in my country, in the land you bought wall to wall to the Basilica of Guadalupe in Mexico City, is not over, my friend. God wanted you to see it from Heaven with a much better perspective. And sorry, Frank, we will not let you rest because now your job is to intercede before our Lord and Mother Mary so that this dream comes true. I will miss you a lot although we will soon meet you up there.....if I do good my job as a catholic!!! Hasta la vista amigo!!!
  • Lilly Bouzide I’m so sad to hear of Franks passing, such a sweet man. I truly enjoyed my time working at PPP, he was a wonderful man to work for. Not only working for the credit card side of PPP, but also helping out The Queen of the Americas side too. I was sorry to hear of Bev’s passing as well, but I found out a couple months after; she and I had a great connection to cooking, since we both had an unbelievable collection of cookbooks. These were the kind of people you wanted to work for, they were a true family business. My condolences to Chris, Matt, Lisa, and their families; may God bless you all. May God bless Frank, and guide him on his eternal journey to meet up with the love of his life, and family and friends that have passed.
  • Ted Natzel With the passing of Uncle Frank, another piece of my childhood has vanished. He was always a big personality in my life and always entertained me with his stories. My heart goes out to the family losing Frank and Beverly not so long ago. Our prayers of strength are with you in this time of grief.
  • Gary Smythe Today I learned of Frank's passing. There is so much for me to say, so many old feelings, so many thoughts, smiles, intensity, love, and compassion. I worked with him for over 20 years. In any long term relationships there are ups and downs. I have always tried to remember the good stuff. The guidance he provided, the business education he gave me. But I will mostly remember his compassion and his humanity. When I left the company, it was the right time and the right reason, but it was so uncomfortable that our relationship didn't survive. We never spoke again. But I still loved him, and I still cared deeply for him. And that is how I will remember such a hugely compassionate man. I have had great successes in my career because of Frank Smoczynski, not in spite of him. Please accept my deepest condolences on your loss. And please accept my love and sympathy to all of his family. To Maureen, Jay, Christine, Matt, Chris, Lisa, Merri, and all of the grandchildren. I know it has been a tough go, and I'm so very sorry for you all.
  • Sharmila Dhar I am very sorry to hear of your loss. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.
  • Mary F ZENTMYER Love to Mattie, Lisa and Christopher -- I remember your Dad as BIG, with a BIG heart -- always a dozen roses or HUGE poinsettia for Aunt Liza (McGovern) or my Ma (Auntie Teenie), and memories of he and Bev coming with the three kids to visit. My Mom once told me he dated Kim Novak before he met Bev. Frank had met Kim Novak at Wright Junior College. So, he chose Beverly over a movie star. Beauty and smarts -- my Mom once said Beverly was not only beautiful but really smart, too! My parents (Ben and Rose (Teenie) Zentmyer met at Schurz H.S., and married in 1937. My Mom would tell me about how smart and successful Frank (Snook, after "Baby Snooks") was, but I most remember his kindness to our Aunt Elizabeth McGovern; his faith, his loyalty to family, his care of his Mom (my "Auntie Florence") -- he'd pay for vacations to Las Vegas, and he'd pay for my sister, Jackie, to go with Auntie Foo Foo. Frank was successful, but always a family man. He was a hard worker, like his father (my Uncle Flory was the nicest guy you'd want to meet), and the world will remember him as the successful businessman and executive, but I remember him as a generous cousin, a loving son, a devoted father, brother, grandfather -- he once gave Uncle Sonny (our Uncle) seats at the Cubs game at Wrigley Field, and Patrick and I used the tickets, even though Patrick is a dyed-in-the-wool White Sox fan. We haven't had as good a set of seats at a baseball game since. Thank you, Frank. Your faith, your family, and your hard-earned success in the business world tell us who you were. Your heart was 6', 6", and your faith was twice that. Your Perfect Plastic Printing is just a small testament to the big man you were. You and Bev can hop in the R.V. and go campin'' now, without a care in the world. All the memories will come back to you now. Peace to you and the Smoczy Family. Love, Mary Frances
  • Linda and Tom Comerci & family Uncle Frank(my Godfather), You will be missed. Our prayers are with you and your family.
  • Doug Eden Frank was a giving and caring leader. He will be missed by so many. My condolences to the Smoczynski and Perfect Plastic family.
  • Tom and Peggy Konz We are sorry for the loss of Frank. We know he is now at peace with Beverly and all the other family members he has lost. Our prayers from 5308 W. Grace are with the family. God bless you all.
  • Nicholas jr. and Nancy konz Rest In Peace, cousin
  • Marge OConnor Frank was a smart, creative and generous person. He and Beverly helped many people through their philanthropy and their business. The OConnor family sends its deep condolences to the Smoczynski family on this loss. May you all find joy in the memories and peace in knowing he is with the Lord.
  • Don Klenske Matt, Elisa & Chris My Deepest Heart Felt Sympathies to you all & your Families. May You find peace knowing that both your Father & Mother touched so many people. Rest Easy Sir
  • Andy and Monica Cieslarski God Bless, Frank. Thanks for all your help and guidance over the years. Keep an eye on us from up above! Matt, Chris, Elisa and all family are in our prayers.
  • Bob Ryan I'm so sorry for your loss. I will be forever grateful to Frank for the opportunities I've had in life because of him.
  • Jennifer & Greg Johnson & family Will miss you my Uncle, praying for your family. You will be reunited with you beautiful wife Beverly.