elevated 3kRd7  August 31, 1929 – May 2, 2023

elevated 3kRd7 Peacefully and surrounded by family, Ralph Gaudio passed away at St. Joseph’s Hospital on May 2, at the age of 93.

elevated 3kRd7 Born in Mendicino, a small village in the southern Italian region of Calabria, he was the eldest of seven children.  After earning a rare at that time high school degree, he became a school teacher.  Eventually the economic deprivations of the Great Depression and World War II, combined with his personal ambitions drove him from Calabria.  After a few years in Rome experiencing La Bella Vita of the 1950s, he sought opportunity abroad.  Using proceeds from the sale of the family calf, he sailed to Venezuela where he lived and worked for five years.  In 1960, like so many Italians at that time, he emigrated to Canada, where he remained for the rest of his life. 

elevated 3kRd7 Ralph displayed a natural gift as a linguist and taught himself English, Spanish and French before he had even left his homeland.  That mastery of language afforded him economic opportunities that were not available to his peers.  In a classic act of Italian furberia, he convinced his future employer at Deak & Co that he had previous experience in the foreign exchange business.  (He didn’t.). He got the job and made a career out of it becoming a pioneer in Toronto’s foreign exchange market.  In 1966 he started his own firm, RG Foreign Exchange, with the assistance of his wife Anna, whom he had just met months earlier.  Shortly afterwards, they established Gaudio Tours, a travel agency.  They continued to operate both businesses until 1996 when they were sold. The success of the businesses manifested itself in the building of the family home on Humbervale where Ralph enjoyed hosting every family function possible.

elevated 3kRd7 Ralph was introduced to Anna, a fellow Calabrian from a village just 10km from his own, in 1966.  He stated his intent to marry her on their first date and they were happily married for 56 years having three sons, Joseph, Julius and Robert.  They continued with many of the traditions of their homeland making wine, tomato sauce and soppressata.  But Ralph’s defining act of bringing Calabria to Canada was the planting of a fig tree that grew from the smuggled branch of a tree that came from his village of Mendicino. 

elevated 3kRd7 His love of food (always Italian), coffee (the stronger the better), wine (preferably his own) and the company others knew no bounds.  He was a prolific story teller with a personality that was truly one of a kind.  When he was not eating, he could be found playing Italian cards.  His favourite game was scopa, which is not surprising considering that il sette bello always seemed to be up his sleeve.  His keen memory made him unbeatable, even late in life.

elevated 3kRd7
From the sale of a single calf, he was able to build a prosperous life for his family.  His story is the true embodiment of the immigrant’s dream.  Ralph was a remarkable individual with a powerful will to live that carried him through physical ailments in his later years.  He was a doting husband, loving father and grandfather and larger than life Zio to his extended family.  His sharp wit and recollection of every detail of historic and family events will be missed dearly by his family and friends.

elevated 3kRd7 Ralph is survived by his wife of 56 years, Anna, his three sons, Joseph (Alicia), Julius (Belma) and Robert, four grandchildren Dante, Giovanna, Ralph Jr and Vigo, sister Maria and brothers Dominic (Angela) and Tony (Susan).  He is predeceased by brother Francesco and sisters Immacolata and Rita. 

elevated 3kRd7 In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation in his honor to The Covenant House or a charity of your choosing in his honor. 

elevated 3kRd7 Visitation
Monday, May 8, 2023 from 4:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
Catholic Cremation Services
6933 Tomken Road, Mississauga, ON L5T 1N4

elevated 3kRd7 Funeral Service
Tuesday, May 9, 2023 at 10:00 a.m.
Catholic Cremation Services
6933 Tomken Road, Mississauga, ON L5T 1N4

elevated 3kRd7 To view the funeral service, please click HERE

elevated 3kRd7 Entombment 
Assumption Catholic Cemetery 
6933 Tomken Road, Mississauga, ON L5T 1N4