2022 Hall of Fame Inductee
University of Rhode Island (1960)
Maj. Gen. John H. Capalbo was born on September 9, 1937, in Westerly, Rhode Island.
He attended the University of Rhode Island where he completed a degree in business administration and the Army ROTC program. During his time as a Cadet, Capalbo was the president of Scabbard and Blade Society, a military honor society. He was an active student and served as the university’s Student Senate Treasurer and treasurer of his senior class.
Capalbo received his commission in 1960 as a second lieutenant in the infantry. Following a three-year active duty assignment at Fort Benning, Capalbo joined the active Army Reserve. He would continue to serve here for another 31 years. His numerous assignments include Operations and Executive Officer, 2nd Battalion, 4th Brigade, 76th Division. He then commanded the 3rd Battalion, 4th Brigade 76th Division.
Earning the rank of general officer, Capalbo served as the assistant Division Commander and Commanding General of the 76th Division for four years. During this time, he developed, planned and executed an operation called “On Away Eagle I & II,” an innovative program designed to provide basic training to Soldiers at a mobilization station at Fort Campbell. This training endeavor was so successful that it received accolades from the Secretary of the Army and Chief of Staff of the Army. It would become the model for mobilization training in the Army.
On October 27, 1994, Caplbo retired after a 34-year Army career. He was awarded the Legion of Merit for his Meritorious Service from Genera Reimer. His other awards include Meritorious Service Medal, Army Commendation Medal, Army Achievement Medal, Army Reserve Components Achievement Medal with Two Oak Leaf Clusters, Armed Forces Reserve Medal with Ten-Year Device, Army Reserve Overseas Training Ribbon and Parachutist Badge.
While serving, Capalbo built a successful civilian career as an insurance executive. He was the Regional Special Investigation Manager for the Allstate Insurance Company and Regional Claims Executive for Fireman’s Fund Insurance Company.He remained active in numerous organizations that support soldiers, their families and veterans. He was a member of The Military Order of Foreign Wars and served as President of the Rhode Island Reserve Officer Association. He was actively involved in developing a rehabilitation program for Rhode Island Veterans experiencing Post Traumatic Stress Disabilities which involves using Button Hole Golf Course for physical and mental rehabilitation.
On August 20, 2021, Capalbo passed away leaving a legacy of leadership excellence.
About the Army ROTC Hall of Fame
The ROTC Hall of Fame was established in 2016 as part of the ROTC Centennial celebration. The first class (2016) inducted 326 former ROTC Cadets who had distinguished themselves in their military or civilian career.
The Hall of Fame honors graduates of the Army Reserve Officers’ Training Corps who have distinguished themselves in military or civilian pursuits. It provides a prestigious and tangible means of recognizing and honoring Army ROTC Alumni who have made lasting, significant contributions to the Nation, the Army and the history and traditions of the Army ROTC Program.
Read more about the 2022 Hall of Fame Inductees.