Following a Family Funeral Mass, Reinterred, St. Margaret's Cemetery, August 24, 2023.
Home at Last! Finalmente a Casa!
Nonna Angelina, Nonno Vincent
Thank you for immigrating from Cosenza, Italy at the turn of the 20th Century with daughters Maria Cristina, Maria Filomena, and son Anthony, searching for a better tomorrow in Fernie, British Columbia. The expansion of your family with Maggie, Rosie, Martin, Fred, Frank, Virgie, and Minnie ultimately provided opportunities for our hopes and dreams.
We cannot imagine or comprehend the shock, grief, and sorrow you and your family suffered when Florence, a young married lady was put to death by hanging on May 2, 1923. The sinister trial she encountered did not harm her morally or spiritually but brought a platter full of shame, of humiliation, and of dishonour for your family to endure for decades.
It didn't help with reporters, writers, authors, artists, and others who took latitudes of interpretation and opinion to injure Florence's character for personal gratification.
Nonna, Nonno, we know your family was subjected to name calling, bias, bigotry, and daily challenges but you soldiered on. We know you worked hard and suffered racism. We know you took time to enjoy your customs, and suffered ridicule. We know you cried and suffered one of our country's greatest injustices.
Today, one hundred years later, the hour of reunion with Mamma and Papa has arrived. Nonna Angelina, Nonno Vincent, your generational grandchildren and Florence's generational nieces and nephews are so proud to bring your loving daughter home.
Nonna, Florence's life may not have been filled with years, yet it overflowed with courage, strength, loyalty, dignity and grace every day. Although she was diminutive in stature her eldest sister often commented on a personality that was warm and sincere and on a face that featured a gentle smile reflecting her pleasant spirit and kind soul.
Thank you for instilling the virtues of faith, hope, patience, obedience, poverty, moral courage, and neighbourly love with your family.
Your generational grandchildren will continue to miss you, your daughters, and your sons. We will forever treasure your cultural gifts, Christian values and your love of family.
Angelina and Vincent's generational grandchildren would also like to express their deepest gratitude and heartfelt thanks to Father Thomas, Chantal, Meghan, John, Lynda, JJ, Wendy, Theresa and the CWL ladies for making this extraordinary occasion glorious, significant, and memorable.
Grazie mille, a thousand thank-yous