In Reply to: WWII information posted by Dolores on 10/21/03 at 12:59 PM:
Visited the ancient (1561) home of the desimone family in summer 2003 (Castelnuovo Parano) from where you can see St. Georgio a Liri, Ausonio from the castle. A room of the house, which belonged to my grandfather's niece at one time, was destroyed by bombing during the Anzio invasion. Overgrown by vines and decorated with a shrine to Our Lady, the section of the house was left as is after WW2.
The home is still functioning as a retreat for each August, the relatives from Lazio, Venice, Sardinia come back for a reunion there. That same niece, now living in Suio Terme, had her current home (her husband's estate) commandeered and seized for use as German headquarters during the same campaign..... it is five floors of rooms built into the mountainside..... and you can see the entire river valley from the balconies. The approach of any land force could have easily been detected. Now it is a splendid home, with fruits and nuts growing against the lower levels of the dwelling, and beautiful furnishings and artifacts. We were breathless during our entire visit! Little did my mother (or any of her children) know that she had three very active first cousins, let alone all of the children and grandchildren we were to meet and celebrate with. My grandfather had been that "prodigal son" that went to America as a lark with his friends, but met my Irish-Canadian grandmother..... never to return to his homeland.