A resident of the Williamsburg area for the past 24 years, Joe Vogrig passed away at Winchester District Memorial Hospital on Saturday, October 6, 2012. He was 80 years of age.
Joe was born in Grimacco, Italy, on March 12, 1932, to his parents Antonio and Teresa Vogrig.
Joe’s talent for singing and dancing, as well as his quick sense of humour and charm, made him the life of many parties.
He sang with the Coro di Alpini in Ottawa as well as with his wife, Clara, with beautiful harmonies typical of his birthplace in the hills of Friuli Venezia Giulia, in Italy.
Although Joe grew up in a Slovenian community in Italy, he spent time working in Belgium, leading him to speak four languages fluently: Italian, Slovenian dialect, French and English.
Joe was also a talented artist. His numerous woodcarvings have been displayed in many cultural exhibits in Ottawa, viewed by many with great admiration. A portion of his work has been entrusted to the Unione Emigranti Sloveni del Friuli Venezia Giulia, who is honoured to have such an magnificent demonstration of its cultural heritage.
Joe was passionate about sports, especially soccer and hockey, and his beloved Toronto Maple Leafs. He was an amateur boxer in Italy. He was admired by many in Italy and here in Canada for his height, earning him the nickname, “Big Joe”.
Joe was a valued construction worker, having helped build many homes, offices and structures enjoyed in Ottawa today.
Joe is survived by his wife of 56 years, Clara, and his children Isabel Cheney of Winchester, Susanna (Tony) Prinzo of Ottawa and Anthony (Sandra) Vogrig of Winchester.
He was the proud grandfather of Tracy (deceased), Carmela, Carla, Nadia (John), Giacomo, Jeff and Cristiano.
Nonno Joe will be fondly remembered by loving family and dear friends in Canada and Italy.
He was predeceased by his parents Antonio and Teresa Vogrig and his brothers Aldo and Antonio Vogrig.
A private family funeral service was held at the Marsden and McLaughlin Funeral Home, Williamsburg, on Saturday, October 13th at 1 p.m. with Father Cosmas Ajawara officiating.
For those wishing to honour Nonno Joe, please consider a donation in his memory to Winchester District Memorial Hospital. Online condolences may be made at marsdenmclaughlin.com.