Angelo Mirno Dittaro passed away Monday, Sept. 21, 2009.
Angelo had a wonderful, rich life. Born on March 29, 1925 in Fort William, Ont. to Giovanni and Orsolina Dittaro, he was the middle of five children: Enrico (Henry), Enzo, Angelo, Ferrucio (Fred), and Crestina (Chris).
The Dittaro home was steeped in Italian tradition: huge gardens, tons of flowers, fantastic Italian meals, stories of Italy, large, loud family gatherings, and Nono’s famous home-made wines and raisin-infused grappa.
While stationed in Belgium during the Second World War, Angelo fell in love with the beautiful Marie Louise (Mary Lou) Detavernier, bringing his bride home to his large, loving family in Fort Frances, Ont.
Angelo’s love of Mary Lou was obvious to all who knew them. They had so much fun together, truly enjoying their fun times and quiet times as a couple.
Angelo had an extremely strong work ethic and always was proud of his work at the local pulp and paper mill as a pipefitter, and his involvement in the I.A.M. union. He always enjoyed his relationship with his co-workers.
Angelo loved to play the guitar and sing. He played with the “Rainycrest Rascals” for many years, entertaining the residents there on a regular basis.
Once Angelo retired, he and Mary Lou quickly developed a large circle of friends through square dancing, enjoying many evenings of card-playing and potluck dinners with their fellow dancers. Their large family room remained fairly empty so that they could practice, practice, practice.
Angelo and Mary Lou always loved the lake and spent as much time as they could at the cabin on Rice Bay in the summer, retreating to Dosido Lane in Texas, where they danced the cold winter months away.
Unfortunately, Mary Lou predeceased Angelo in 1999.
Angelo began attending all the hockey games he could fit in, regardless of who was playing–same row, same seat all the time. People quickly began to recognize his constant presence there and he enjoyed being greeted by so many as he entered.
He was always quick to have a chat and to share his pocketful of candy.
During the last years of Angelo’s life, Mary Bender was his close companion. They spent happy years in the condos: caring for Mary’s dog, Sandy; having coffee with the bunch every morning at McDonald’s; enjoying the many outings with Mary’s family; sipping a little “Irish” before bed; and playing his guitar and story-telling with the fellows.
Once in Rainycrest, Angelo and Mary (who lived right across the hall) continued to have fun at the monthly dances and the regular Bingo games.
Angelo always knew how to make the best out of all situations. Though sometimes saddened by unexpected events in his life, he made the most of his life right to the end–seeking out happy, laugh-filled moments with his family and friends.
We will miss Angelo and his guitar-playing, singing, and dancing, especially his little song about the crazy rooster.
Angelo is survived by his son and daughter-in-law, Pat and Donna, and their children, Jade and Cody; daughter and son-in-law, Nancy and Garnett Paull, and their children, Terra and Gavin, and grandchildren, April and Garrett; and daughter and son-in-law, Nicole and Phil Hum, and their children, Andrew, Sarah, and Alexander.
He also is survived by his devoted sister, Chris (Al) Lowe; sisters-in-law, Doris Dittaro and Joyce Tilbury; and many nieces and nephews.
Services will be held Thursday, Sept. 24, 2009 at 11:30 a.m. at St. Mary’s Roman Catholic Church in Fort Frances.
In memory of Angelo, donations may be made to the Alzheimers Society c/o Green Funeral Home, P.O. Box 427, Fort Frances, Ont., P9A 3M8.
Angelo’s love of life and generosity of spirit will live forever in our hearts.
“What is a life well lived? Hands that have given much more than they have taken. Feet that have chosen the way of goodness and peace. Eyes that have seen the blessings of each day. Lips that have spoken with tenderness and care.
A heart that has embraced each season of life with gratitude and joy.”
Arrivederci, Angelo.
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