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Vincenzo Tonelli was born in the year 1916 in Castelnovo del Friuli, then province of Udine, in northern Italy. Castelnovo was a poor village in resources, its inhabitants worked as peasants and many had to emigrate before the First World War to Germany, and then to France, Switzerland and Belgium. Vincenzo's parents had conflicts with the hierarchs fascists who dominated the village, because they did not want to pay the card of the Fascist party. In 1930, at the fourteen years age, Vincenzo had to emigrate with his father in France, with Paris. There he worked as a pawn in municipal works. A year later his father returns to Italy and Vincenzo settles in the south of France, in Toulouse, where he will live many years. He works as a bricklayer and lives with his colleagues in the Italian labor emigration. He gets in touch with many Communist workers and begins to take part in the activities of the active communist organizations in emigration.

"How I will not take Spain into my heart. When we arrived the brigades, the Spaniards received us with flowers and oranges "

In September 1936, at the Twenty years age, it arrives in Spain to fight with the side of the Republic, with the friend and companion Armelino Zuliani. Both are enrolled in the Garibaldi Brigade. Armelino dies on the first day of battle, on the Hill of Los Angeles. Vincenzo participates in all the battles of the Madrid front. He is wounded in Majadahonda, but he returns to the Garibaldi Battalion in time to participate in the Battle of Guadalajara. Then fight on all fronts. In September 1938 participates in the last great battle in the front of the Ebro, in the Sierra Mackerels. At last he returns to France, to Toulouse. After the German occupation of France, it fights against Nazism with the formations of the French Maquis. He is arrested and deported to Italy, where he is imprisoned and long interrogated by police in the prisons of Udine. Released after July 25, 1943, forced to enlist in the Italian Army, after the armistice of September 8, 1943 and the German occupation of northern Italy, returns Venturosamente to his country, to Castelnovo. Here it organizes the first formations of the Maquis anti-fascist.

From autumn 1943 to end of April of 1945 it fights with the guerrillas Garibaldi of the Friuli, like Commander of Battalion of the Division South Arzino. Germans and fascists, failing to capture him and Encarnizan against his family with arrests and torture. After the war Vincenzo returns clandestinely to France, with Toulouse. The French authorities wanted to expel him, but he finally manages to get French citizenship because of his participation in the resistance. Thus, he continues to live in Toulouse, working in construction and continuing his political and ideological commitment. Already old, it continues collaborating in the initiatives of AVER and AICVAS, the associations of ex-combatants anti-Francoist French and Italian. He is also president of the association "Les Gariabaldiens". Participates in countless meetings and debates, in France,
In Spain (after the death of Franco) and in Italy, presenting with simple and very effective words to the young people their experience of anti-fascist combatant. In 2004 he manages to place a statue of Garibaldi in the Place de Italie in Toulouse.