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July 4, 1931 – November 25, 2018

Antonio Tassone Antonio Tassone Antonio Tassone Antonio Tassone Antonio Tassone Antonio Tassone Antonio Tassone Antonio Tassone Antonio Tassone Antonio Tassone Antonio Tassone Antonio Tassone Antonio Tassone Antonio Tassone Antonio Tassone Antonio Tassone Antonio Tassone Antonio Tassone Antonio Tassone Antonio Tassone Antonio Tassone Antonio Tassone Antonio Tassone Antonio Tassone Antonio Tassone
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Obituary for Antonio Tassone


In the early morning of July 4, 1931, Sant' Antonio came to an expecting Maria Rosaria in a dream and told her that she would effortlessly give birth on this day to a baby boy. She went to the river to wash clothes, then returned home where she gave birth to a son, just as she had dreamt. She named this child Antonio. Antonio was a faith-filled man of peace who lived his life by acting justly, loving tenderly, and walking humbly with God. His family was his life, and his priority was simply to provide good food, a warm home and a love that knows no boundaries. Surrounded by his loving family on the evening of November 25, 2018, Antonio left this life to be with God.

Born in Serra San Bruno, Calabria to Bruno Luigi and Maria Rosaria, Antonio was the sixth child of ten. As a youngster in Italy during the depression, he enjoyed playing outside with his sisters, brothers and friends. His childhood was cut short when he tragically lost his father at the age of 9 and was forced to grow up quickly. While Antonio was able to attend school until grade 3, he had to quit to start working so that he could help provide for his family. His work was labourious on the family farm and logging in the forests in the Italian countryside. At 21 years of age, he joined the Italian army. Antonio married his sweetheart, Raffaela, on February 8, 1959. In search of employment and a better life for his family, Antonio voyaged to Canada with his brother, Nazzareno, several months later. They landed in Halifax, Nova Scotia, and made their way to Port Arthur, Ontario to join their sister Marietta and brother-in-law Nazzareno. Soon after, his wife and firstborn, Bruno, reunited with him.

The family settled among a community of family and friends and had four more children: Rosarina, Giuseppe (Pino), Antonio (Tony) and Sabrina. He raised his children to know their faith, culture, language and roots. He modeled love, kindness, empathy, a strong work ethic and humility.

Antonio worked very hard to provide for his family. He was first employed as a lumberjack getting paid by piece work. His other jobs included working as a labourer for CN Rail, Superior Paving and ACZ Construction. The life of an immigrant was tough, but he never once complained and was always appreciative of what he had. Unfortunately, the exposure to environmental pollutants, resulted in a respiratory disease known as Pulmonary Fibrosis, which he suffered from during the last two years of his life.

Antonio delighted in life’s simple pleasures. Each year he planted a large garden and made wine, soppressata, prosciutto, sausages, and preserved tomatoes. He would enjoy the fruits of his labour with his family and friends as he took great pleasure in sharing a meal with others. His generosity, hospitality and love for others were clear. Everyone was welcome in his home and even though he didn’t have much, whatever he had was on the table for all to share.

Antonio’s daily life was quite regimented. He would get up at 5:00 a.m., bathe, shave and have his morning espresso while faithfully watching the morning mass. He would then take care of his garden and rabbits. In the afternoon, he would walk down the hill to the Italian Cultural Centre, which he referred to as his office, where he enjoyed playing scupa, briscola and tresette with friends. He would come home to have supper with his family and then watch game shows and sports. Before going to bed, he would prepare his things for the following morning. He was a man of routine.

Antonio’s greatest joy was his family. His loss will leave a void and his beautiful soul will never be forgotten. He will be forever missed by his wife Raffaela, with whom he would have been married 60 years this February; his son Bruno, daughter-in-law Victoria and their children Thomas, Madilyn and Olivia; by his daughter Rosarina and son-in-law Saverio (Sam); by his son Giuseppe (Pino), daughter-in-law Lucy and their children Anthony and Kyra; by his son Antonio (Tony), daughter-in-law Teresina and their children Adam, Andrew and Christina; and his daughter Sabrina, son-in-law Scott and their children Maia, Ava and Noah.

He is also survived by his siblings, who have shown him true love and friendship: his sister Marietta Larizza, his brother Cosimo Tassone and wife Immaculata, his sister Bruna Larizza, his brother Salvatore Tassone and wife Giuseppina, his sister Angelina Pisani and his sister-in-law Gina Tassone. As well, he is survived by his sisters-in-law and brothers-in-law Maria and Sam Federico, Giuseppe Vallelunga, Rosario and Maria Larizza, Salvatore Larizza and many cousins, nieces, nephews, comares, compares and friends who have always shown him great respect and love.

Antonio was predeceased by his father Bruno Luigi, his mother Maria Rosaria, father-in-law and mother-in-law Giuseppe and Brunina Larizza, sisters Rosina Caruso and Nazzarena Pelaia, brothers Nazzareno Tassone and Giuseppe Tassone, brothers-in-law Nazzareno Larizza, Bruno Caruso, Domenico Pisani, Salvatore Pelaia and Bruno Larizza, sisters-in-law Serafina Vallelunga and Filomena Tassone and great-niece Serafina Vallelunga. We have hope that he is reunited with them once again.

A funeral service to celebrate Antonio’s life will be held on Friday, November 30, 2018, at St. Anthony’s Roman Catholic Church. The mass will begin at 11 a.m. followed by a private entombment at Our Lady of Charity Mausoleum. Visitation will be held on Thursday, November 29, 2018, at Sargent & Son Funeral Home from 5:00-8:00 p.m. with the vigil service beginning at 7:00 p.m.

As expressions of sympathy, donations may be made in Antonio’s name to the TBRHSC Foundation Cardio-Respiratory Department for the purchase of Airvo Optiflow Nasal High Flow Oxygen Humidification Systems which will give much comfort to others with a respiratory illness.

A special thank you to all of those who have supported our family during Antonio’s illness. We appreciate the visits, words of expression, prayers, and acts of kindness which have helped us tremendously and will never be forgotten. On-line condolences may be made at

JANUARY 11, 2019


The family of the late Antonio Tassone wishes to extend their heartfelt gratitude for the gifts of kindness, hope, and love during our time of deep sorrow.

We are blessed and appreciative of all who called, texted, emailed, and visited, including those who travelled long distances, to be with us. We are grateful to those who attended the visitation, funeral, and luncheon. Many thanks to those who sent floral tributes, gift baskets and certificates, food trays and meals, prayer cards and mass cards. We are also grateful to those who made charitable donations towards the purchase of Airvo Optiflow Nasal High Flow Oxygen Humidification Systems, which will provide medical support and comfort to patients suffering from respiratory illnesses.

We would like to thank Monsignor Pasquale Stilla, Father Ciaran Donnelly, Father Luigi Filippini, and Deacon Pasquale Coccimiglio for the beautiful service and for their words of wisdom and courage. Deacon Pasquale, thank you for preparing the service for the visitation and the homily at the mass. Our father truly was the salt of the earth. Although Bishop Colli could not attend, we appreciate his kind message of support.

A special thank you to our friends Catherine Iorianni, Stasio Catanzaro, Carlo Cappello, Kevin MacLeod, and Tanya Joanis, as well as to the members of the Italian Choir, for their beautiful gift of music. Each song was meaningful to our father and family. Many thanks to our friend Mike Ianni, who helped us prepare a lovely video montage honouring our father, which was enjoyed by all.

Antonio’s grandchildren were his pride and joy and he would have been so happy that they were able to participate in the readings, petitions, and offertory. The children brought meaningful gifts to the altar to honour their Nonno, including his homemade wine, tomato preserve, bread, soppressata, espresso, a baseball, a stuffie bunny rabbit and Italian playing cards.

We would like to thank the active pallbearers: Pino Federico, Nazzareno Larizza, Rocco Larizza, Domiano Pelaia, Angelo Tassone, Bruno Tassone, John Tassone, and Luigi Vallelunga. Also, thank you to the honourary pallbearers: Mary Austin, Sandra Coccimiglio, Dave Colistro, John-Paul Federico, Sam Federico, Ross Larizza, Gregorio Mancuso, Armando Pucci, Sam Ruberto, Giuseppe Vallelunga, Marcella Vallelunga, and Marco Vallelunga. You and your families have been an integral part of our lives.

Thank you to the Italian Cultural Centre for a wonderful meal and reception. Many thanks to Rob Cattani for his kindness and professionalism. A special thank you to the Ladies of the Italian Society of Port Arthur for volunteering to help serve coffee and food. Thank you to the members of the Men’s Executive of the Italian Society of Port Arthur who were present at the visitation and honoured Antonio as a 50-year member, and to Benito Melchiorre for his respectful tribute to our father. Also, thank you to the Honour Guards of the Italian Society of Port Arthur who attended the funeral.

We wish to extend our thanks to those who helped in the medical care of our father; Dr. Vanessa Luks for her compassion and support; Dr. Jim Scali for his years of dedicated care; Dr. Andrew Migay and Dr. Kevin Miller for providing comfort to our father and family while in palliative care. A heartfelt thank you to the amazing nurses on 2B at the TBRHSC for the empathy and respect they showed our father and family. To nurse Nasima, whose name ironically means “gentle breath”, you provided our father and family with spiritual hope and guidance. To nephew and respiratory therapist Bruno Tassone, thank you for sharing your expertise, for providing us with support and for always ensuring our father was comfortable. To the respiratory therapists at TBRHSC, thank you for being positive and for making our father feel at ease. Thank you to niece Mary Austin who gave us advice, strength, and support and ensured the best care for our father. Finally, thank you to nephew John-Paul Federico who, over the years, has assisted our father with his health and pharmaceutical needs, and who continued to be there for him during his hospital stay.

We are grateful to all of our family, comares, compares, and friends who came to visit our father during his last days. Antonio loved and appreciated your company. A special thank you to his sisters Bruna Larizza and Marietta Larizza and his brother Cosimo Tassone and wife Immaculata, sisters-in-law and brothers-in-law Gina Tassone, Giuseppe Vallelunga, Sam and Maria Federico and Rosario and Maria Larizza, for spending time with him, loving him, and praying and singing with him. Thank you to Giuseppe Vallelunga and John Ianni for bringing espresso to our father and family every morning. A heartfelt thank you to Maria Federico, Giuseppe Vallelunga, Marcella Vallelunga, Sandra Coccimiglio, Maria Agostino and Frank Franze for bringing meals daily to our father and family while in the hospital. Words cannot express how much this means to all of us.

We also wish to extend our gratitude and appreciation to the staff of Sargent and Son Funeral Home for the care, kindness, and friendship they have given us. We are very blessed that you could be here for us during this difficult time.

Please accept this acknowledgment as an expression of our deepest gratitude. We are forever grateful to each of you for your support and compassion, and please know it will never be forgotten. If there is one thing to remember about Antonio, it is to live life as he did: act justly, love tenderly, walk humbly with God - Micah 6:8

Buona notte amore
Ti vedro' nei miei sogni
Buona notte a te che sei lontano

Goodnight my love
I'll see you in my dreams
Goodnight to you who are far away

-Il Silenzio-

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First Visitation

When Thursday, November 29th, 2018 5:00pm - 7:00pm
Sargent & Son Funeral Home
21 N. Court Street
Thunder Bay, ON P7A 4T4
Additional Information

Service Information

Friday, November 30th, 2018 11:00am
Rev. Luigi Filippini
St. Anthony's R.C. Church
123 Hilldale Road
ThunderBay, ON P7G 1H6

Interment Information

St. Andrew's Catholic Cemetery
690 Oliver Road
Thunder Bay, Ontario P7B 6Z6

Reception Information

Friday, November 30th, 2018
Reception Extra Info
Italian Hall