Although this was written for my eyes only, I think he did a great job. Often, if not most of the time, people would think that Gerry and Tony were brothers…..(looked very similar) His courage to maintain his composure while he read this was amazing…….Gerry is, after all, one of Tony’s very good friend. Tony’s passing has effected many as a son, husband, father, brother, brother-in-law, cousin, friend, customer, boss, neighbour or teammate. And of course, cannot forget all the kids through Tony’s coaching days, we thought of as a second family to us.
So, thank you Gerry for reading this at a very difficult time.
On behalf of everyone assembled here this day, I wanted to extend our most sincere and heartfelt condolences, sympathies and prayers to the Gemmiti and LoCurto Families upon their tragic loss during this darkest time.
You must all attempt to help me through this tribute as I am unusually sentient this day.
Indeed, I usually canʼt watch the exploits of ʻTouched by an Angelʼ or my ʻQueenʼsʼ favorite, The ʻWaltonsʼwithout becoming misty, and often times weeping openly.
But this day is different!
Although, the ʻGood Lordʼ has dispatched his ʻAngelsʼ, to accompany our ʻFallen Brotherʼ and propel him towards his ʻHeavenly Kingdomʼ, albeit prematurely, this verbiage will celebrate my perspective on the Life and Legacy of an Extraordinary man, a man of more than ordinary mettle.
Antonio Gemmiti, inherently embodied everything a man aspires to become.
A proudly loving, respectful, and dutiful son and brother, ever reverent and watchful, attending to their every covet, crave, or desire.
A cherished and nurturing ever gracious Husband and Father, a hunter, purveyor, provider and protector for his precious family.
You would be hard pressed to find a man as amicably affable, approachable, and convivially cordial as Tony, communicative, chatty and continuously courteous, frank, civil, and obliging.
Never considered a loquacious, garrulous, rambling or longwinded conversationalist, Tony was a storyteller nonetheless, eloquently graceful, complimentary, tactful, and ever thoughtful, as many bore witness to firsthandedly this past week, as they shared their poignant remembrances and reminiscences and bade their saddened farewells within the hallowed halls of the venerable Mount Sinai Hospital.
Indeed, Tony, was bestowed with a genial spirit, an essence, a vitalness, a soulful myriad of mirth and merriment.
Blessed with a sunny disposition that would illuminate every environment that he embraced, he possessed a congenial humour, a pleasant jocularity, jesting and joshing, amusingly funny, and whimsically witty.
Inside the man, Tony possessed a civilized humanity, a benevolent, kindhearted spirit, always accommodating, compassionately gentile, and tenderly merciful.
His moral compass resonated with a cultivated, educated, and enlightened sense of dignity and integrity, a reverence for righteousness.
Indeed, a man of unparalleled distinction, dedicated, diligent, and deserving of Lifeʼs fullest amplitude.
A successful and entrepreneurial businessman in his own right, Tony was always the consummate professional, proficiently adept, masterly and skillful, ever generous, trusting, fair minded and loyal to his family, employees, and clientele.
My ʻBrotherʼ, was an entertainer extraordinaire, the unmitigated and profoundly complete ʻHost of Hostsʼ, unbridled generosity, a benevolence bordering on philanthropy. altruistic, magnanimous, and bountiful.
It was through this wondrous fellowship of friendship that I was introduced unto his unprecedented character, his honest, integrous, quiet and gentle self.
Veritably, as a glutton of unprecedented proportion, my ʻBrotherʼ always fueled my foodie fantasies with superbly sumptuous delights, such as splendiferously succulent ʻspiducciʼ, pleasantly palatable ʻporchettaʼ,tasty, spicy and savoury, and at his belovedʼs fiftieth milestone Birthday Bash, a fatted ʻporkerʼ, roasted to the pink of perfection.
Fueled and aided by the odd liquid libation, at his favorite hideaway on the riverfront of the ʻNottaWasagaʼ, we enjoyed the unpretentious experiences of endless nights consumed with oftentimes meaningful, heartfelt, and passionate conversations.
Certainly, we both fervently believed in the power of intention, in truth, and reality, whereby every decision, strictly, truly, and verily, righteous or wrongly, has brought us to this very distinctive moment, indeed, an intention of the ʻDivineʼ.
As a seemingly ageless, yet semi-retired athlete, and unrepentant athletic supporter, Tony remained a diligently committed sportsfan, loving to engage, embody and embrace, counsel, ʻCoachʼ, and mentor his beloved ʻBolton Senior Baseball Teamʼ, remember and reminisce with his hockey ʻHooligansʼ, and celebrate the glorious grandeur and greatness of his golfing glory.
Indeed, Tony possessed a resilient, pliable, flexible, yet sturdy, strong, and secure strength of character and an unwavering personality.
Tony was courageous, patient, understanding, imperturbable Even whilst being ravished, tortured, and tormented with this incessantly disruptive disease.
His tenacity to persevere, to overcome, his will to win was indomitable.
Indeed, ʻThe Good Lordʼ has been present with him, step by step, during this arduously painful journey.
Witness his farewell ʻFeteʼ, accepting the acute awareness of his imminent plight, he chose to greet his kinship, brotherhood, and the fraternity of his fellowship with dignity, honour, and respectability, and remained courtly, majestic and noble, throughout, as he jested in his own words, in the participation and enjoyment of his own wake, whilst he was still awake!
Above all else, in my humble opinion, Tony, valued, loved, worshiped and adored his Family, his Mother and Father, his Sister Paola/Tony, his devoted in-laws Joseph/Fiorella , and their entire extended Families, his Twin Towers, Michael and Robert, but most of all his cherished Maria, his childhood sweetheart, his charmingly engaging, and enchantingly beautiful Matrimonial Bride and lovingly nourishing Mother of his beloved boys, his Soulmate!
Tony, we have delighted in your fondness, warmth, tenderness and attachment to life itself, your unfounded passion, devotion, and esprit du corpsʼ for all that you enlivened, engaged, animated or exhilarated.
We will surely miss the camaraderie with our crony, our chum, our companion and confrere, his warm and compassionate smile, and his sense of affection, attachment, and amicability.
But we will never disregard, dismiss, or dis remember our ʻBrotherʼ.
Rather, we will redeem, reclaim, and regenerate the recognition, retention, remembrance, recollection and remarkable retrospective that was and is Tony Gemmiti.
In closing, I firmly believe that the collective of our Prayers, sympathies, condolences and compassionately contemplative meditations and reflective thoughtfulness have not failed us. They have not been for naught, forgotten, nor abandoned. Indeed, as heralded, they have paved a passageway to a prepared place of prominence and priority for our fallen ʻBrotherʼ at the ʻBanquet Tableʼ of our ʻGood Lordʼ!!!