Fernando Anthony "Red" Olivieri

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  • "Dear Mrs. Olivieri, Julie Sarah and Margot, I feel honoured..."
    - michelle pasqualoni
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    - Janet Farrell
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    - Catherine Hudecki
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    - Clementina D'Onofrio
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FERNANDO ANTHONY ("RED") OLIVIERI It is with profound sadness that the Olivieri family announces the passing of our extraordinary husband, father, grandfather, brother, physician and friend, Fernando Anthony ("Red"). Fernando passed away in his eighty-seventh year, after a rich and full life and a valiant struggle with illness, in Hamilton on August 10, 2011. Predeceased by his beloved parents Anna Viola and Antonio Olivieri and sister Nellina Salciccioli, and dear niece Anna Maria Salciccioli, our Dad Red was the beloved husband for 59 years of Victoria (nee Parniak). He was the cherished father and father-in-law of Ann and Christopher Morgan, Nancy Olivieri, Margot Olivieri, Sarah and Ian Fejtek, and Julie and Ted Murray and the proud, affectionate grandfather ("Fa") of Jacob Morgan, Allegra Olivieri, Thomas, Julia and Daniel Rocchi, Johnathan and Emily Fejtek, Rachel and Meghan Murray. He was the loving and loyal brother of Nida Corrado and Rose Salciccioli and the admired brother-in-law of Nick Tessman and Valerie Kenzie. In addition to his beloved parents, sister and niece, Dad was also predeceased by brothers-in-law Elpidio Salciccioli, Peter Salciccioli, Nick Corrado and Peter Parniak and sisters-in-law Bernice Parniak, Noreen Parniak and Mary Tessman. He will be fondly remembered by his many cousins in the Viola, Olivieri, Nusca, Bianchi, Mancini and Peroni families, and as caring "Uncle Red" by several nieces and nephews in the Olivieri, Salciccioli, Corrado, Parniak, Tessman and Kenzie families. Dad was born in Hamilton on February 18, 1925, the youngest child of Anna Viola and Antonio Olivieri and the family's only son, whose arrival was always described by his adoring sisters as the second coming. Dad grew up among a warm extended family including thirty cousins living within a few city blocks. The experience forever gave Dad the quiet confidence of one deeply loved in childhood. After attending Cathedral Boys High School, he graduated in the extraordinary class of the 1948 Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto. One of his great joys was anticipating, planning and participating in Medical school class reunions. His internship and residency from 1948-1952, years he described as some of the best of his life, were spent at Toronto General Hospital, Sunnybrook Hospital and The Hospital For Sick Children. Dad began Pediatric practice in Hamilton, assisted by his longtime nurse Norma Scanlon, 59 years ago this month. He touched the lives of generations of patients and their families, providing care for some of his original patients' grandchildren when he retired in 1998, and inspiring many of his patients themselves to pursue medicine. In addition to private practice, Dad contributed significantly to the Department of Pediatrics at St. Joseph's Hospital, Hamilton. Dad seemed born for the era in which he was fortunate to practice medicine: happy in his role as a physician, careless of fame, and living his life with uprightness and honour. We were blessed to know his sense of humour, infectious laugh, wit, honesty and adventurous spirit. He was passionate about music, particularly opera, Italy, photography, history and genealogy, wine, gardening, skiing and tennis and he had a deep religious faith. Dad thrived as a father, a role in which his involvement was complete, his loyalty unshakeable, and his interest unending. Small in stature, Dad would have protested the idea that he was larger than life, but his enthusiasm lit up any room he entered. He exuded a joy for all life had to offer, and will be forever remembered as young at heart. Dad bore his illness bravely and with dignity. Those at his bedside frequently know that his good humour, although expressed recently without words, was never lost. Throughout five years of illness, he received heartwarming support from friends and relatives who visited regularly. We extend our deepest gratitude to those individuals. Dad knew you were there. Dad held great love for his extended family, particularly his sisters, to whom he was loyal and devoted. He led us by example and his advocacy for thousands of children, his tenacity for life, and his honesty continue to inspire us. We will miss him beyond measure. A Memorial service is planned for this fall. The visitation service is planned for Sunday, August 14, 2011 from 2-4 and 7-9 (prayers 8-9) p.m. at Cresmount Funeral Home, Fennell Chapel, 322 Fennell Ave. E., Hamilton, Ontario L9A 1T2, 905-387-2111. Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at The Church of St. Anthony of Padua, Barton Street East, Hamilton, on Monday, August 15 at 10 a.m. Dad strongly supported the Canadian Association of University Teachers in its struggles for academic freedom and protection of patients. A fund is being established for contributions to support The Red Olivieri Lectureship in Research Integrity. For details, please contact [email protected]

Published in the Toronto Star from Aug. 13 to Aug. 14, 2011