Tony (Antonio) Orsillo: Cement mason who ‘built Seattle’ loved his garden, grandchildren

May 14, 2019 353

Tony (Antonio) Orsillo passed away April 6, 2019 at Swedish Hospital in Edmonds, WA. Tony was born on February 10, 1933 in the tiny Italian hill town of Pago Veiano, an hour outside of Naples. He was born in to a large farming family, where he learned to grow fruits and vegetables which became his life long passion.

In 1960, at the urging of his older brother Danny, he came to the United States for work and travel. He ended up staying for the weather and for love. On July 15, 1962, he married Doris Knutter of Polo, MO. They had met during the World’s Fair in Seattle, WA, while he worked as a dishwasher at Clark’s Around the Clock restaurant on Broadway. Speaking little English at the time, he got a job working on the railroad laying track, but after a short time he quit. In 1964 he joined the Cement Masons & Plasterers Local 528, where he found his true calling.

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