Name: touch with them by letter, and perhaps soon

Name: Enzo Zona

Date of Birth: March 11th, 1899

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Introductory Entry:
August 4th, 1914

To
whom it may concern,

            My name is Enzo Zona. I am an
Italian Canadian living in Toronto. I have decided to keep this recollection of
my life as it progresses through time. I feel that it will be the only proper
way to keep a record of all the events that will transpire throughout my life,
during this period of great change and differences.

            My name is Enzo Zona, I was born on
the eleventh of March, 1899. At the time of this entry I am fifteen years old,
in high school, and living in Canada. My mother and father immigrated to Canada
from Italy with sponsorship from Italian sympathizers. This was done to escape
the forming Triple Alliance with the psychopathic Germans. This was in 1898,
and by 1899 I was born into the free and great country of Canada. My father had
been working as a lawyer in Sicily, Italy, and he spoke English as an
intermediate between English speaking international clients. We now reside in
an upper-class neighborhood, and my family has become friends with many people
of the same economic status.

            My father’s name is Giovanni, and my
mother has taken on the Zona last name with a surname of Maria. When my parents
decided to move to Canada, they were forced to leave many family members
behind. We still keep in touch with them by letter, and perhaps soon we will be
able to sponsor them to come and join us in this new and free place. We have
become extremely loyal to the crown as they have provided us with protection
and freedom in an unstable era. We were able to bring my grandmother with us
into Canada under the reasoning that my mother was pregnant and when the child
was born (me), she would need someone to take care of her whilst my father was
at work. She is already complaining about Canada – something about the tomatoes
being of poor quality, as her pasta sauce is suffering.

            As for the world at this time, I am
unsure of what will happen. Tensions are very high in Europe, and because
Canada is still tied to Britain, we will have to go to war if they do. I try to
keep my political views to myself, mostly because as a teenager, many regard me
as unintelligent and uninformed. I know one thing, it is that if we do go to
war, I will be the first to sign up, and get out into the real world.

            Not to become a history teacher
(they are very boring), but recently the Archduke and Archduchess of Austria
were visiting Sarajevo, and promptly were assassinated. The man who wielded the
gun was named Gavrilo Princip, and he was part of the Serbian nationalist group
The Black Hand. Thus, a horrible downward spiral has been created that
will likely lead to the start of a great war. Again, not to go into too much
detail, but these were the following events: Austria-Hungary blamed Serbia for
the assassination, declaring war on them. Russia mobilized their troops as a
response, and France mobilized in support of Russia. Germany was not a fan of
these actions, and ordered France and Russia to stop. This did nothing, and
within a couple days, Germany had declared war on Russia. France then stepped
up to the plate – along with Britain and declared war on Germany together. In
the coming days, Canada will be declaring war in support of Britain, as we are
required to do so.

            These events mark the start of
something great. The start of a revolution that will bring the Germans to their
knees. I have spoken to my parents about it, and they think that it would be
good for me to join the war and support the country that so graciously provided
us freedom.

            When I walk down the city streets
here in Toronto, I see recruitment posters, banners, and propaganda supporting
enlistment. I will be enlisting as soon as I can, and as soon as some of my
friends get the go ahead from their families to join. It is against the law to
join underage, but it’s the only thing to do in this place; I’d rather do it
than paint the walls of my father’s new law office. We will be home by
Christmas so there is nothing to worry about.

World War One:
Single Entry – Letter home to family

April
9, 1917

            To my family,

            There has been a great triumph for
the Allies here at the Vimy Ridge, France. Up until this point in the war, my
regiment, and the rest of the Canadian military, has been under British
command. That ended a few short days ago, when Canada came into our own, and
were allowed to attack as an independent unit. The battle was meticulously
planned and practiced for months. The training was relentless, but in the end,
it has paid off.

            My job in the battle was to man some
artillery. We had to change our aim on a precise schedule in order to use a
creeping barrage. I have included a photo of myself manning the artillery gun,
so you guys can show the family how dashing I look reigning death down upon
those bloody Germans. This battle was extremely successful, and thanks to all
the hard work and training, we took the ridge in a matter of days. The losses
in the process were not small, but they were smaller than other battles that had
proved less successful.

            I lost many friends into the hail
fire of bullets and shells that were descending down upon us. By day break on
the second day, I had lost almost half of my friends. Many heroes were forged
in the whirlwind of death that we faced, and may their legend live on as the
valiant freedom fighters that they were.

            Seeing what war is really like has
made me regret my foolish choice to come overseas, but none the less, I have to
push on or else I will end up in the ground where half my friends are buried already.
For generations to come, people better remember the sacrifices that we are
making, and honor those who have fought bravely, so that regular people can
sleep soundly. You have my best wishes for the rest of my time away, and I hope
that I will be able to come home soon.

                                                                                                                        Love,

                                                                                                                                    Enzo

1920s:
– Life in the 1920s – Diary Entry

May 21st, 1926

Dear
diary,

            Times are great for my family and I.
We are as prosperous as ever. The world is now an exciting place to be with new
development’s being made in all kinds of areas. Our lives are becoming easier,
and more manageable. We just bought a new model T Ford, and we are enjoying
summer trips to the cottage in Muskoka. My mother greatly enjoys her new
washing machine, and my father is glued to his new radio listening to sports
whenever he is not working. Music is changing to this new style called Jazz,
and my mother and her friends enjoy dancing to it (although it is painful to
watch). My father heavily disapproves of the “Flappers” and forbid my mother
from doing anything like it.

            As for myself, I have been working
as a paralegal in my dad’s office, and I get decent pay. I am currently going
to Law school at the University of Toronto, so that I can take over the family
business when it is time to do so. I graduated high school in 1921, starting in
the September after I got back home from war (1919), and I did the final two
years. I have made myself well educated, and put myself into a good position
for the future.

            The clubs my father and his friends
used to visit are now running speakeasies and rum running down to Detroit.
Apparently, the government does not mind this because we have not received any
legal cases against the rum runners. Hopefully times stay good and we will be
able to refer to these times as the “good old days” in the future. I will say
one thing, there is no way that current stock market growth can sustain itself.
Too many people are hoping on its gravy train right now, and soon it will all
come crashing down. It has happened before in the United States, and will
happen again.

I recently got married to the most beautiful
and intelligent woman I have ever met. Her name is Lucia and she is from the
same region of Sicily as my family. We met in little Italy, Toronto, when I was
going to pick up some tomatoes for my mother to cook lasagna. We fell in love
during the year after high school, and she has now bore onto me a child. His
name is Giuseppe Zona: Born November 14th, 1922. I hope that the
future is bright for my little child, and that he may have peace during his
life.

1930s:
– Living Through the Great Depression – Diary Entry

March 11, 1938

Dear
Diary,

Today
is my thirty ninth birthday!

As I mentioned before, the stock market is an
unstable game to play. Eight years ago, when it all came crashing down, it
launched the largest depression ever felt by this country. Many are naming this
decade the “Dirty Thirties” because of how poor some people are. My family has
little income now, so some lifestyle adjustments have been made. We feel that
we have a responsibility to support our city, and the government is doing
little to help. Consequently, we have turned the office into a soup kitchen.
Even though my mother is now in her late fifties, and my grandmother in her
early eighties, you should see them fly through the kitchen whipping up all
kinds of meals just like they did back home. It was a little challenging to get
dad to agree to that, but with a little work, and using my leverage as a
partner at the firm, he caved and opened to the public. Several other families
are also doing this and there are people coming from all over the country to
reap the rewards of generosity in Toronto. It is sad to see, but the government
is doing nothing for its people unless they declare bankruptcy. People have
honor, and will not give it up just to receive some small cheque from the
government. Some people are so impoverished that they wear flower sacks as
clothes and bathe is the same water as the rest of their family. These were
acceptable things in medieval times, not in the 1930s.

            There
are many transients roaming the city and disturbing peaceful people, and this
is annoying the government to the point where they use crowd control to keep
them away from government buildings. If they want people to behave and act
normal, maybe they should have helped them in the first place. Anyways, there
is no point in going on about the government if I can do nothing about it.

            This time period cannot last much
longer because it is putting too much strain on the economy to hold up over
time. Like they say, the best way to kick start an economy is to start a war,
and we shall see what happens over the next handful of years. I am worried that
another war may come from the flaring tensions in Europe and the failure of the
Treaty of Versailles. This new German guy named Hitler is trying to rise to
power, and if he succeeds it will spell nothing but bad news. I am just worried
that my son, now sixteen, will try to join the war like I did foolishly when I
was his age.

 

 

World War Two:
– Telegram from Son

March 11, 1942

            Today is my forty third birthday,
many things have come and gone during my life, and now that I am around the
halfway point; I feel that it is time to journalize my life once again. During
the last four years, many things have happened. My son went off to war, my
grandmother passed away, and I took over the family business from my father.
Things have mostly gotten better, the economy picked itself up from the ashes,
and like a phoenix the country has been reborn into the fires of war. This
time, at least Canada got to choose when to go to war, and there have been
promises made that there will be no conscription (we all know how that turned
out last time).

            The fact my son went away to war
does and does not bug me. It scares me knowing that any day a man could show up
at our door telling us that he has died in battle. On the other hand, I did the
very same thing when I was his age, so I cannot really get that mad at him. He
keeps in constant contact by telegram and we receive messages every week. I am
glad that he is fighting all the terrible things going on in Europe, and all
the power to the solders that try to take down that cynical lunatic Adolf
Hitler.

            Below I have included the telegram
that my son sent:

Dear
my beloved mother and father,

            It has been two weeks since I
arrived in Britain. We have been kept in small quarters and been training for
the entirety of our time here. We were assigned rifles and gear just today, and
I feel like a soldier now. Everyone here is excited to start the real training.
I wanted to write to you, to tell you that in one months’ time, I will be
headed out to the front lines. I however, signed up to be a pilot in the RCAF.
If I get accepted, I will head back to Canada to train and learn to fly. If I
do come back, maybe there will be a chance that that we could meet up.

            Congratulations dad, on another year
of life, and another year of work. I am going to fight in your name for the
honor that you and your friends fought for in the first great war. My friends
and I are determined to let the Germans know that Canada is a force to be
reckoned with, and that we don’t just sit around drinking maple syrup all day.
I love you both, please tell the family that I love them so much, and I hope to
see all you soon.

                                                                                                            Love,

                                                                                                                        Giuseppe Zona

 

 

 

1945-1982:
– Controversial Issue – Diary Entry

23 September, 1958

            Dear diary,

            I have lived on this earth for a
long time now. I have seen many low points – and high points in this countries
past. Never have I ever seen something so powerful and promising thrown away. On
a day that will forever be immortalized as “Black Friday”, Prime Minister
Diefenbaker cancelled the future of this country.

            My area of expertise, and my son’s
involvement in aviation, has given me a unique, non-biased opinion on the
issue. Dief (he is not worthy of a full name) decided that the Avro Arrow was
too costly, and would not do the job that Canada needed effectively.

            This could not be farther from the
truth, because in the end, slightly more expensive planes created by your own
people, is better for the country than giving tax dollars to another country to
profit from.

            Too many bright minds and talented
people have just been lost, and I will not tolerate it any longer. Mr.
Diefenbaker, you can expect some lawsuits coming your way. The least I can do
is bankrupt your brainless excuse for a Prime Minister.

 

1982 To Present: – War on Terror – Diary Entry

September
2, 2001

Dear Diary,

            I am a very
old man, now 102 years of age – and they have not been too kind to me. I am so
withered that just writing this out hurts my arm, hand, and neck. I am here to
do one thing, and one thing only. That would be to write about terror and the
war about it.

            When I was a
young man, foolish and strong, I decided to expand my horizons and join the
army corps. I searched high and low and put some Germans onto death row. My son
then did the same, WW2 was his claim to fame – at least he came home again. The
day he did, the whole world thought “Maybe we could start again.”

            The people
saw that men in uniform were the root of evil, so with the Americans, we
responded like an eagle. That was over 80 years ago, now the terror installed
into the hearts of old and young comes from the same place this dammed T-Shirt
does.

            This war on
terror needs to prevail. They are here, and it is darkness that I fear. Now
that the soup is getting cold, and there is an empty space at the local morgue.
I have decided to go to heaven above, and watch upon my children with
tenderness and love.

Obituary

September
3, 2001

Enzo Zona, loving father of Giuseppe Zona, and son of
Giovanni and Maria passed away yesterday after writing his thoughts about
terrorism into the journal he has had since a child. It is a story about the
world we live in today, and how much it has changes in the last decades. Enzo
was 103 years of age and was one of the last World War One survivors. His son
also fought in the second World War to defend his honor. His life is the
textbook chronicle of the Sicilian immigrant who wanted to reach for the top
and obtain freedom in Canada. He will be greatly missed in his community for
his frequent volunteer work and generous donations to many charities – changing
the life of many affected by the crises in years gone by.

            There will
be visitations held at Cardinal Funeral Homes on Bathurst St., Tuesday and
Wednesday. There will be a funeral held at St. Michaels Cathedral Basilica
Thursday at 3PM. There will also be a celebration of life held in the Graydon
Hall Manor. Enzo will then proceed to be buried at a family plot in the Mount
Pleasant Cemetery. 

 

 

It’s over
now, you can go home…

           

 

x

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