IS moved on Joseph Pippaone of the last living witnesses of the terrible war vicissitudes of the retreat from Russia of the Second World War. He had been an alpine of Italian Expeditionary Force between January 1942, the date of his call up, and February 1943, the date in which he returned to Italy. We had interviewed him last year shortly after his 100th birthday on April 6.
I tell about it with deep sadness, despite being aware that when one arrives at Joseph’s venerable age, every day more, lived with the presence, strength and lucidity that have distinguished him, has been a gift from the Universe for him, for his family and for the many people who loved him. Including his beloved Alpini. A sadness given by the fact that it’s like my dad had passed away. The feeling is the same.
During the interview I had done with him I deeply excited. In his lucid account of some episode, which had seen him as a protagonist in Russia, I had the extraordinary opportunity to empathize in his stories and, with the imagination, feel myself at his side.
I felt by his side at that juncture in which he managed to capture a runaway mule who wandered in the desolate steppes and beaten by the icy wind and who became the handhold to hold on to in order not to fall and remain isolated from the rest of the troop. A mule that he couldn’t even get on was so exhausted.
I felt him in those situations where his wounded comrades and desperate they clung to the edges of his jacket for help. I felt him while he wrote on his cot the date “03/02/1943″the day he left Russia to return to Italy.
All these memories condensed them, thanks to the help of wife Lin and unbeknownst to the children, in a book entitled “The cape engiassà” which collects his memoirs and with them those of the many young men like him of the Verona Battalion forced to become men too quickly and sent into disarray in a foreign land to fight a war neither sought nor desired by them.
When a Alpine Go on it leaves a void in the community of which it has been a part. The void that Joseph leaves is immense. Listening to the stories of those who fought wars for their country, just and unjust, is one emotion that is worth living.
When I think back to the hours spent that day with Giuseppe, a lump still rises in my throat. I still see it hunched over his garden, hoe in hand, to turn over the clods and arrange the new plantations. There was an Of immense dignity. I am grateful to his family for the opportunity to meet him!
The Alpine groups of Lugagnano, Sona, Palazzolo And San Giorgio in Willows they cling to their children with emotion and immense affection Maria Theresa, Rita And Raphael for the loss of their dear father. The funeral will be held on Wednesday 11 January at 9.30 in Goito. By his express will, the vigil is held at the house, where there are memories of a lifetime.
When an Alpino goes on it is usually remembered with one prayer. It is a writing that dates back to the discovery of the family of Colonel Gennaro Soraa soldier who spent his life in the service of the country on the front of theAdamello in the First World War, on Svalbard Islands with the company of Umberto Nobilein East Africa in captivity in Kenya. It’s a letter sent to her mother in July 1935, which was then taken up and adapted after his death and then became the property of all the Alpini in arms and on leave.
We dedicate it to Joseph, to his strong, industrious and industrious life. We dedicate it to a boy from 1922 who faced unimaginable difficulties, bringing his testimony to the present day.
Hello great Alpine, honor to you! May the earth be light on you.
On the bare rocks, on the perennial glaciers,
on every crag of the Alps where providence
he placed us as a faithful bulwark of ours
districts, we, purified from duty
we raise our souls to You, O Lord, who protect
our mothers, our brides,
our distant children and brothers, e
help us to be worthy of the glories of our ancestors.
Almighty God, who rules all the elements,
save us, armed as we are with faith and love.
Save us from the relentless frost, from the whirlpools of
storm, from the impetus of the avalanche,
let our foot rest securely
on the vertiginous crests, on the straight walls,
beyond the treacherous crevasses,
make our weapons strong against everyone
you threaten our homeland, our flag,
our millennial Christian civilization.
And You, Mother of God, whiter than snow,
You who have known and collected
all suffering and all sacrifice
of all the fallen Alpini,
you who know and gather every yearning
and all hope
of all the Alpini alive and in arms,
You bless and smile at our Battalions
and our groups.
So be it.
Giuseppe Pippa, an Alpino born in 1922 and a veteran of Russia, has “continued”. The honor of memory