As Commander Bruno was sent off, people spontaneously began to whistle “Bella Ciao”

A quiet whistling could be heard outside the church where the funeral of the partisan Paride Brunetti took place. Father Alberto said, “ In his heart, he hungered for justice.”

Commander Bruno was bid farewell to the whistling of the Italian partisan song “Bella Ciao”. The funeral of Paride Brunetti took place in the almost full, Church of the Sacred Family, in the Prealpi district. As the coffin was brought out, those present on Tuesday afternoon movingly bid farewell to their friend, whistling quietly, and the singing the words of the song. The words were spontaneous, unrehearsed by any choir, to give the last goodbye to the partisan who passed away on Sunday morning.

“He certainly wasn’t afraid of death, even though his life had been so dramatic,” explained the parish priest Father Alberto Corti. “He felt death was close by, but not now. In his heart, he had hungered for justice, showing great attention to the things around him, not only to himself. He often spoke to me about the concept of the common good, starting with the family, moving on to other topics. Now we commit him to God, so that he may find that peace and justice that he had sought throughout his life.”

At the end of the funeral service, Angelo Proserpio took the floor and spoke on behalf of the mayor and of the town. Brunetti had also stood at the latest local elections, in the same list as Proserpio. “Paride, you were an exemplary citizen of peace, starting from your and our spiritual awakening, the Resistance,” he said emotionally. “Your life encapsulated the whole of our recent history; you saw man’s confusion in Russia, you organised the resistance in the Belluno mountains. You never sought easy success, privilege or power, you even refused the title of army colonel; it would have been so easy to do so, but you didn’t. You taught us not to discriminate, that the truth that we seek lies in the words of the person opposite us.”

Many delegations of the National Partisan Association were also present to share the pain of Paride’s sons, daughters-in-law and grandchildren; in addition to groups from Saronno, with their president Aurelio Legnani, and the provincial group, with their president Angelo Chiesa, there were delegations from Belluno and Feltre. The local authorities were represented by the mayor, Luciano Porro, who wore a sash in the colours of the Italian flag, the leader of the local council, Augusto Airoldi, and several town councillors. Many local political representatives were also present, including the regional councillor Rienzo Azzi and the provincial councillor Alessandro Fagioli.

“For forty years, I was at your side, and I’m proud of it,” Aurelio, who had been a friend of Paride, said at the end of the service. “With you goes a piece of history, of real history, of the Resistance. Thanks and goodbye Bruno.”

Pubblicato il 13 gennaio 2011
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