Dino DiGiuseppe

Dino DiGiuseppe

Saturday, October 30th, 1954 Monday, March 23rd, 2020

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Obituary for Dino DiGiuseppe

It is with broken hearts that we announce the passing of a dear husband and father, on Monday, March 23, 2020. We say goodbye with deepest gratitude for having had him in our lives and for knowing with certainty that he held us closely at his core.

Born in Port Arthur in 1954, Dino was the youngest of four siblings, raised in a loving and joyful family home where, fittingly, there was a significant focus on food … delicious Italian food, much of it grown in the backyard garden. When Dino first started Kindergarten, he marched proudly off with two small meatballs stuffed carefully into his jacket pocket. Food remained a central theme of his life.

Dino attended local Catholic schools before heading to Lakeview HS, where he excelled both in sports and academics. As a gifted and respected student, he was asked to teach French classes when a qualified teacher couldn't be found. After high school, Dino played football for the University of Western Ontario, and so excelled at his studies that he gained early acceptance into the University of Windsor Law School. There, Dino established a cadre of lifelong friends, men and women of the legendary Law Flames hockey team, to whom he remained loyal and connected in the decades ahead. Hockey played an essential part of Dino's life: he was a devoted Red Wings fan, a Thunderwolves loyalist, a keen student of sports minutia, and a regular player. It was in Thunder Bay that Dino formed new groups of friends, like the Schemers and the Wedco Family, for whom hockey was a common passion. Dino continued to play, two or three times a week, right up until this month. He played with enthusiasm and pleasure, always heeding his wife's parting salvo: “Have fun, Honey … and don't get hurt!”

Dino often said that his life really began when he met Joan. Although the two lived blocks from each other as children, they didn't meet until years later, on a blind date in Toronto. After sharing a drink, Dino suggested that they go for dinner, during which he admitted that he had already eaten dinner … but enjoying a second meal was no problem for a man who prided himself on his gastronomy talents! Dino and Joan were married shortly after that date, and they immediately started a family. Dino adored his children, Max, Martha and Sam, and he was always happiest in their company. He loved to talk with and about them, to encourage their dreams, and most importantly, to spend time among them. When the kids began to leave home, it was Dino who travelled by their side, helping them set up their apartments, and loading their fridges with more food than they needed.

Dino was very proud of each of his children and equally proud of the life partners they chose. When Max became engaged, it was Dino who initiated weekly Sunday dinners to get to know Samantha and usher her into the family. He adored and admired Martha's husband, Mike, who is himself a knowledgeable and keen fan of hockey (Go Wings). And he was thrilled when Sam found Adam, a calm and loving man that Dino saw as the perfect match for his outgoing youngest.

Even though Dino never really wanted a dog, he grew very attached to Jack, the family's Jack Russell. Despite the multiple personality distortions that plagued the dog, Dino walked Jack faithfully two or three times a day, and he always insisted that Jack was his best shovelling companion.

Dino achieved a great deal in his career. Following law school, he earned a Master's degree in Mediation at Osgoode Hall; he was a Bencher for the Law Society of Ontario; and he was appointed to the Judiciary in 2000. Dino was a highly intelligent, thoughtful, loyal, humble and deeply caring individual, and he brought all these qualities to his service on the bench. He was committed to restorative justice and, true to form, he treated each person who entered his court with dignity and compassion. It was obvious that Dino was well suited to his calling; he enjoyed his colleagues, respected the lawyers who appeared before him, and held police officers in high regard. In particular, he loved the courthouse staff.

If Dino were to write his own obituary, he would forgo all attention to himself and focus instead on the family he treasured, the good people he worked with, and the friends he loved. His newest band of pals called themselves The Nonnos. Dino was honoured to be part of this group following the birth of his precious granddaughter, Elizabeth Allegrina. The grandpas met regularly to talk about life and, especially, about family.

Dino was predeceased by his beloved parents, Allegrina and Francesco. He continued to grieve the loss of his dear friend, Tim McFarlane. Left to mourn Dino are his siblings, Tony and Gayle DiGiuseppe, Guido and Rita (Elda) DiGiuseppe, Maria and Enzo Santin; cherished nieces and nephews too numerous to list; and the entire Powell family. He will be loved and remembered forever by many dear friends, and most especially by his wife, Joan Powell, his son, Max (Samantha Roth), his daughter, Martha (Mike Thibert) and his youngest, Sam (Adam Charles). Sweet baby Elizabeth will not forget her Nonno.

Cremation has occurred, and on-line condolences may be made at

A service will be held when the world allows. As one sister-in-law advised, a great man deserves a great celebration.

Expressions of sympathy may include donations to Our Kids Count, a charity close to Dino's heart, or to a local food bank.

Say not in grief that he is no more,
But in thankfulness that he was.

To plant a memorial tree in honor of Dino DiGiuseppe, please visit our Heartfelt Sympathies Store.
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Donations are being accepted for: OUR KIDS COUNT OF THUNDER BAY INC.

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Eva, Lucy, Peter DeAmicis, Teresa & Steve Tilley & families, Dibiagio, Vertolli, Charlton Families, and other have planted trees to honor the life of Dino DiGiuseppe.
Planted in the area of greatest need

Eva, Lucy, Peter DeAmicis, Teresa & Steve Tilley & families

It is so hard to know what to say at this incredibly sad time. Please accept our deepest condolences at this time. Our thoughts are with you & family.
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Memorial Tree Planted

Eva, Lucy, Peter DeAmicis, Teresa & Steve Tilley & families planted a memorial tree for Dino DiGiuseppe
Comment | Posted at 12:19am via Memorial Tree

Richard Gates

Joan and family -
I was shocked and saddened to learn of Dino’s passing. It was an honour to consider him my friend for many years, dating back to our days as Directors of CDLPA. During that time, we met monthly in Toronto and on the evening before the board meeting the Directors would enjoy a dinner together, filled with good conversation, fine food and many laughs. He will be remembered for his insight and wisdom by his CDLPA colleagues.
In the ensuing years Dino would find a reason to visit Windsor, while on the Bench, and on those occasions he and I would attend a Red Wings hockey game followed by a Greek dinner, replete with many lamb chops, at The Parthenon Restaurant in Detroit. You may recall when Dino was appointed, I was able to secure a letter of congratulations from the Red Wings organization, which was presented at his swearing in. There was no doubt Dino was one of the Red Wings most ardent fans since his days attending law school in Windsor.
Dino was a dear and caring friend and a distinguished Judge. I will cherish my memories of the good times we shared, our long phone chats, his humour and enthusiasm for life, the law, his friends and fine food. He adored his family and he will be missed by all of us whose lives he touched. You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers at this sad time.
Dick Gates
Comment | Posted at 11:35pm via Condolence

Norma Chataway

Dear Joan, I am sorry for your loss. May you find comfort with your family and friends.
Comment | Posted at 04:33pm via Condolence

Joy Gray

Dear Joan. I am so sorry for your loss.

Take care

Joy Gray
Comment | Posted at 12:07pm via Condolence

Dibiagio, Vertolli, Charlton Families

Wishing you peace to bring comfort, courage to face the days ahead and loving memories to forever hold in your hearts.
Tree Image

Memorial Tree Planted

Dibiagio, Vertolli, Charlton Families planted a memorial tree for Dino DiGiuseppe
Comment | Posted at 05:57pm via Memorial Tree

Why light a candle?

This is why you should light a candle..

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