This has been a profoundly sad, heartbreaking week.  On Monday, our friend and colleague, Joe Caggiano, died suddenly.  Joe was only 48.  He leaves behind five beautiful children, his wife Kathleen and his parents Paul and Sue.  I am overwhelmed at the loss his family must now endure.  The light of his life was his family.  Joe was a wonderful father and a model husband.  During breaks in discussing Coalition business, Joe and I would often exchange stories about our kids.  You could hear the love for his family in his voice and see it in his eyes.

Over the last two years I got to know Joe as we collaborated on Coalition matters.  Just last year Joe became a member of our Board of Directors.  As those of you who knew him can attest, Joe brought unmatched enthusiasm and optimism to all of life’s challenges.  He saw opportunity where others only saw risk.  He always looked to turn a negative into a positive.  He believed in the Coalition’s mission.  His thoughts and actions always focused on what was good for the Coalition membership as a whole.  Joe, I thank you for your support and stewardship of the Coalition.  We will miss you.

Joe was also a patriot.  He served his country as an officer in the United States Navy.  His love of country was reflected in his concern and support of our wounded veterans.  Indeed, Joe was the driving force behind the Coalition’s Annual Charity Golf Tournament Supporting Wounded Veterans.  As Bill Gormley would say “Joe was a ninja!” encouraging potential sponsors to join the cause in support of the tournament.  It was a labor of love for him.   From now on the Coalition Charity Golf Tournament will be known as The Joseph P. Caggiano Memorial Tournament to honor Joe and his unwavering support of our wounded veterans!

Please keep Joe and his family in your thoughts and prayers.

Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.  Matthew 5:4