Born in 1938 in Norfolk, Frances was the only child of Francis and Muriel Frost Facchini. Her grandparents, Michael and Minnie Turi Facchini, were Italian immigrants. He was a tailor in Norfolk known for the fine men’s suits he made and also the beautiful dresses he sewed for Frances, his only grandchild. Frances’ mother grew up in the Blackwater area of Virginia Beach, where Frances was fond of visiting.
Frances was six years old when her father, who had attended ODU and worked in sales, died. Her mother, a waitress at Norfolk’s Snug Harbor Restaurant, married Gus Costis eight years later. Frances joined the workforce as a store clerk while attending Maury High School. She later took classes at ODU before beginning a 33-year civil service career. She started as a clerk-typist and retired after serving as personal secretary to seven commanders of Norfolk Naval Base and administrative assistant to four commanding generals of The Fleet Marine Force Atlantic. A career highlight was serving as personal secretary to Sen. William B. Spong Jr. in Washington, D.C. from 1966 to 1972. Other than her time working on The Hill, Frances always lived in Norfolk.
Frances passed away in 2018 at age 79, but starting in 2020, the Facchini Frost Fund at the community foundation, which is named for both sides of Frances’ family, will forever provide scholarships for area students attending ODU.