Leopold J. Cimino
Leo Cimino enjoys writing about true life events. He is the author of Misty’s Tale. His novel brings humor, tears, and memories to one’s forefront.
Born on April 13, 1957 in Cristobal, Canal Zone. Cimino, a Zonian, grew up playing in the jungle around military bases. His father, Leopold, was an army military police sergeant stationed at Fort De Lesseps, a coastal defense artillery battery guarding the entrance of the Panama Canal at the beginning of World War II. His mother, Josephine, worked as a secretary. Upon completing the eighth grade, his family moved to Orlando, Florida following his father’s retirement from the Panama Canal Company.
After graduating from Colonial High School and attending community college, he enlisted in the United States Army. Prior to departing for military service, he met Rhonda Watson at his neighbors’ house. They married ten months later following his completion of army basic and advanced individual training.
Shortly after arriving to his first duty station at Fort Knox, Kentucky, Cimino was called upon to serve as an army Spanish interpreter to assist with the Cuban Refugee Crisis. Subsequently, he served with the 193rd Infantry Brigade in the Panama Canal Zone. Fifteen years later, he again returned to Panama to take his parents’ remains back to the former Canal Zone. After forty-three years of marriage Cimino’s father, Leopold (86), passed away. Nine months later his mother, Josephine (61), passed away of a broken heart. Cimino went on to have a successful career in the army, retiring as a sergeant major.
He and his wife with their two children and a dog returned home to Altamonte Springs, Florida. During his spare time, while job searching, he began writing a World War II novel based on a story that his father had told him occurred during his time as an MP, which stopped an Axis plot to destroy the Panama Canal.
Cimino received his bachelors from the University of Maryland University College while stationed in Alexandria, Virginia. After retiring, he attended the University of Central Florida to complete his master’s degree, which he hoped would lead to more job opportunities.
He worked for two organizations in his attempts to find a career as rewarding as his army service. Despite his optimism with the jobs, his morals and values contributed to his unwavering to settle for anything less. While unemployed his dog passed away. That heartbreaking experience inspired him to write Misty’s Tale.
He remains passionate for individuals who serve in the military to protect our liberties. He states, “It is a privilege to serve and follow in the footsteps of those who have previously defended our freedom.”
When not writing or working on a new endeavor, he spends his time with his wife Rhonda, his children, and family and friends. He attributes his upbringing, having faith and good moral values, in shaping his life. As the years slip away. Cimino says, “Every day is a blessing, cherish your time, and be grateful.”