Remembering Nonno

His name was Emilio Ezio Mazzantini. Some called him Ezio, some called him Dad. And some, like myself, called him Nonno.

He was a husband, a father, a grandfather, an Uncle, and a friend. Nonno was almost ninety years old, and his accomplishments over those years were many. He married, helped raise four children and a grandson, then lavished his attention and love on to the grandchildren that came in the later years.

The dictionary defines the word “legacy,” as a “body of persons sent on a mission,” or “something that is handed down from generation to generation.”

Nonno spent his whole adult life on a mission, building his family with Nonna. Along that journey Nonno enjoyed some grappa, and he always had a soft spot for the ladies. His sense of humor was great, and the way he chuckled when he laughed, especially when he flirted, was infectious. Everyone who knew Nonno laughed with him.

Despite any trials or hardships that he may have faced along his mission, Nonno seldom spoke of those things to me. Instead, he talked about the good things in life. Mainly, he spoke about his family.

I noticed while looking at the photographs of Nonno that were displayed throughout the funeral home, that there were only a few pictures of only Nonno. Most of the pictures were of Nonno and Nonna, or him and his relatives, his friends. There were many of him and his children and grandchildren. That’s the kind of man that Nonno was; he defined the word “family” by the way the lived his life.

There is a scripture that states “teach a child in the way that he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.”

Nonno’s mission led him to be a teacher to his sons, his daughters, and his grandchildren. He taught them all how to live and how to love.

Today we mourn the loss of Nonno because he was a man of great affection, and he was loved by so many. We mourn because we will miss him.

But today we also celebrate the life of a man who was on a mission. The legacy that he leaves behind is great, and it can be seen in the eyes of his wife and his children.

So we honor Emilio Ezio Mazzantini. That husband, that father, that grandfather, uncle, and friend.

We thank God for Nonno. May all of us who knew him continue to be blessed with the knowledge that Nonno’s mission is now complete.

Rest in peace, dear Nonno. May your legacy be remembered always.