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"ALF" 2008 Obituary


ALFANO o@ca.on.york_county.toronto.toronto_star 2008-03-12 published
ALFANO, Francesco " Frank"
Suddenly at home on Tuesday, March 11, 2008. Frank, beloved husband of the late Emilia RIZZO. Loved father of Rose DE NITTIS (Joe,) Anthony (Gwen), Maria CESARIO (Biagio), Angela FEBBRARO (Carmelo), Michael (Victoria), and Mario (Annamaria). He will be sadly missed by many grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Friends and family will be received at the Lynett Funeral Home, 3299 Dundas St. West (one block east of Runnymede) Wednesday 7-9 p.m. and Thursday 2-4 and 7-9 p.m. Funeral Mass on Friday, March 14, 2008 at 9: 45 a.m., at St. Francis of Assisi Church (Grace and Mansfield). Entombment Holy Cross Cemetery. If desired, donations may be made to the Heart and Stroke Foundation, or the Hospital for Sick Children.

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ALFIERI o@ca.on.york_county.toronto.globe_and_mail 2008-04-04 published
BATTISTA, Franceschina (née ALFIERI)
Mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, lifelong promoter of family, study, work and worship. Born May 5, 1919, in Castropignano, Italy. Died November 18, 2007, in Toronto of organ failure, aged By Dolores DI FELICE and Aldo DI FELICE, Page L6
At 5 feet tall, our grandmother was a giant in our lives.
Franceschina ALFIERI was an only child raised by her mother and grandparents. Her father, after whom she was named, had died in the First World War six months before her birth. Franceschina was taken out of school at a young age to work on the family farm. Not being able to continue her education was Nonna's lifelong regret.
At 16 she married Liberato BATTISTA. They had four children, the youngest born in a field as the family took cover during a Second World War bombing of their hilltop town.
In the early 1950s, Liberato immigrated to Toronto and the family slowly followed, with Franceschina and their youngest daughter arriving in 1960.
Almost 30 years ago our grandfather died. But Franceschina wasn't one to give up. She insisted on living alone and took care of her own affairs. She worked at a local factory making plastic bags, one time badly breaking her arm when it caught in the machines. But she stayed there for some 30 years, until the age of 68, fiercely proud of that fact.
Franceschina could make her way around all of Toronto by bus. Although never fluent, she knew more English than she let on and never had problems communicating.
Her family meant everything to her. Anyone who visited her home was overwhelmed by the many family photos on display. She was not one to replace a picture. She simply made room for the new ones. She adored her seven grandchildren and was overjoyed that they all became university graduates. Our successes pleased her to no end.
Franceschina believed in working hard. In the summer she toiled in her vegetable garden and tended her fruit trees, and in the winter she knitted blankets. Respect for others was essential. She would counsel us with the Italian saying, "Il rispetto è di quello que lo fa, non di quello che lo riceve," which roughly translates into, "Respect belongs to the person who demonstrates it, not the person who receives it." At social functions she would pull you aside and ask whether you had paid your respects to a certain person.
Franceschina gave with her whole heart, whether spoiling us with endless gifts or scurrying around during a visit to offer food and drinks.
Her youthful spirit stayed strong. But her body weakened and she lost her lifelong independence during her final months. Just a day before leaving us, she clutched her first grand_son close to her, refusing to let go, and whispered a last lesson in Italian: "Vogliatevi bene" - love each other.
Dolores and Aldo DI FELICE are Franceschina's grandchildren.

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