Tony left this earth early Thursday morning (the 31st of January) to continue spreading joy and cheer in the next realm. He radiated a positive glow around him and was able to brighten anyone’s day in minutes. His favorite things to say were “Isn’t it a beautiful day?”and “no problem”.
Tony was born in Bolzano, Italy in 1943, the fourth of five boys. His family was poor, but Tony was an entrepreneur from an early age and always found a way to make enough money to enjoy the simple joys of life. He sold fruits, vegetables, cigarettes and fish, made tips as an altar boy during baptisms, weddings and funerals and worked as a helper in a welding shop all before he was eighteen. As a young man he loved to sing and he had a beautiful operatic tenor voice. He and his brothers belonged to the acapella Alpine Men’s Chorus in Northern Italy. They would often start singing in bars and soon everyone would gather around singing along.
After serving in the Italian Alpine army for eighteen months he found his way to Freeport, Bahamas where he and three of his brothers would work and reside for the next ten years. There he began to learn English and he met the love of his life, his wife Kathy. They would have two children, Marissa and Robert, during their time there. He started a welding company, and after doing some work for Chevron, he got an offer to come to the San Francisco Bay area. The family spent the next eight years in Napa and then Tony began overseas travel with Chevron. This took him and his wife to Japan, China, Singapore and Korea spending a total of ten years in Asia. He then went on to Angola, Africa after which he retired from Chevron. He was not busy enough after he retired so he operated a little hot dog stand at the Vintner’s golf course in Yountville for a year, but then got an offer as an independent contractor to go work in Kazakhstan. When he finally stopped working he decided to retire to the Dominican Republic in the Caribbean. After building a house in the DR, he remained for another four years but family responsibilities towards his elderly in-laws had him moving back to Napa.
Back in Napa he became busy with projects. He made beautiful ironwork art and built small pieces of furniture. He grew grapes and made wine and liqueurs and he loved to cook and garden. He also enjoyed playing bocce and golf on a weekly basis. Most of all though, he loved his family and friends and doted on his grandchildren.
Tony collected friends all over the world and loved them all. He was fun to be around and fond of joking and playing practical jokes. He was always eager to have conversations and if someone believed as he did, he would take the other side just for the sake of argument. Even though his ways were unconventional he always got his point across and was invariably right because he believed in doing what was fair and just. He will be dearly missed by all, family and friends alike.
Tony leaves behind his wife of 51 years, Kathy, son Robert and his wife Catherine, daughter Marissa, grandchildren Taylor, Josephine, Chase and Landon, brother-in-law Milton and his wife Kathleen, brother Giancarlo and numerous nieces and nephews. A Celebration of Life is planned Feb. 10 from 12 to 4 at his home. We would like to thank all of the staff at Continuum Hospice for the care and compassion that they showed Tony while under their care.