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'His presence is surely felt': Vaughan garden dedicated to civic hero who died from COVID-19

Community-builder Tony Alati is remembered for his passion for helping others
June 14, 2022
Yoyo Yan

A garden at St. Jean de Brebeuf Parkette in Vaughan was dedicated to the late community-builder Tony Alati on his birthday June 10. His friends and family raised funds to have the garden installed.

Mayor Maurizio Bevilacqua, council members and Agnese Alati, Tony's wife, extended greetings, and Father Eugene from Immaculate Conception Church blessed the garden.

"Tony Alati has a lasting legacy of fostering friendship, service to the community and an unwavering commitment to helping others," said Bevilacqua.

"His contributions to our city have made an immeasurable impact, and although he is no longer with us physically, his presence is surely felt."

On April 3, 2020, Alati died with the COVID-19 virus. He is remembered as a loving husband, father, son, brother and coach to many young athletes.

Alati was a passionate sports fan who played baseball for the Vaughan World Series Slo-Pitch Baseball League with the Hornets and Orioles. He later served as vice-president of the league and helped co-ordinate and support more than 46 teams.

In addition, for many years, Alati volunteered as a soccer coach for the Woodbridge Soccer Club, where he guided his daughter Arianna's team to several championship games.

In April 2022, Alati was posthumously named the 2020 Ward 2 Civic Hero and the award was presented during a public meeting to his friends and family.

Alati's commitment to community-building continues to have a positive impact in Vaughan and beyond.

"As a coach, mentor and friend, Tony went above and beyond every day in every way to change people's lives in a positive and meaningful way," said the mayor.

The Tony Alati Garden is located at St. Jean de Brebeuf Parkette at 131 Golden Gate Circle in Woodbridge.

"The garden will serve as a reminder of his dedication to others," said Ward 2 Coun. Tony Carella.