Rosario Filice and Iolanda Russo
Rosario Filice was born 1925 in Borgile, Cosenza, Calabria. Iolanda Russo was born 1923 in Cleto, Cosenza, Calabria. They were married in Cleto, Cosenza, in 1944 and had four children before immigrating to Canada: Anna (Florindo Pucci), Eugenio (Barbara Isaak), Rosa (Tom Watkins) and Mary (Allan Humble).
Rosario immigrated to Canada in February, 1955. Sponsored by his brother-in-law, Geniale Russo, he left Naples and travelled alone by ship. He docked at Pier 21, Halifax. Before leaving Italy, he worked on his father, Eugenio’s farm, and as a side job, made roof tiles. Upon his arrival to British Columbia by train, Rosario worked for the CPR in Invermere (and later, Kelowna).
In January, 1957, Iolanda, along with the four young children, left Naples and set sail to Halifax on the ship, Olympia. The family travelled by train across Canada, met Rosario at the Enderby Station, and travelled by bus to be with family waiting for them in Oyama. In January 1958, when living in Kelowna, Iolanda and Rosario welcomed their first Canadian born son, Frank, and then in September 1963, Albert joined the family.
Rosario was a quiet man, who was instantly liked by all those who met him. He worked hard to support his family and always appreciated the assistance of those family members who arrived before him. Sadly, Rosario fell ill and passed away in 1966 at the age of forty, leaving a young family to adjust to their new country. Iolanda, a very determined woman, raised all six children to be proud Canadian Italians and carry on the legacy their father was unable to fulfill. She worked in the orchards and on the farms alongside her brothers until she was well into her seventies. A pillar of the family, she lived independently until her passing in 2007. Upon her passing, Rosario’s remains were relocated from the Catholic Cemetery to Lakeview Memorial Gardens, where they were laid to rest together. Iolanda and Rosario instilled an admirable work ethic and legacy of love in their six children, sixteen grandchildren and thirty-two great-grandchildren.
Jill Pucci Hotchkiss
1/18/2022 10:45:50 am
Hi, I am Maria Florio.
6/5/2022 06:49:16 pm
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