Salvatore Capozzoli, Jr. June 7, 1932 - November 14, 2020.
Sal was the son of Salvatore Capozzoli, Sr. and Anna Roberti Capozzoli, an immigrant
from Caserta, Italy. He also had a sister fifteen years his senior, Jennie Capozzoli
Forlingieri who adored him as a second mom.
Sal grew up on Federal Hill. His dad was a waiter at the Old Canteen on Atwells Ave.
It's still there. Sal would shine shoes on the steps. There were men who would have
him shine their shoes only to ask him to do it again right after he had finished. His dad
got wise to what was going on and told Sal no more. It was good money. Later Sal
would also work in the restaurant, first washing dishes, then waiting tables, and
eventually hosting weddings. He was a great detail guy.
As a teen Sal endured a tragic accident. He was hit by a ball while playing baseball
and lost his left eye. This injury would redirect the course of his life. No longer could
he focus on sports, but he was a good and diligent student, and a good Catholic. His
dad approached the priests who frequented the restaurant, saying that his son, Sal,
would like to become a priest. They said it wasn't a good idea. Priests need to read a
lot and the boy had only one eye.
For a bit I know he drove a hearse-that is until a guy they picked up for morgue
transport started to groan. From there he chose pharmacy. I wish I knew more about
Upon graduating from the RI College of Pharmacy he began to teach there. One day at
the school he saw a pretty secretary through a window. He turned to his buddy and
said, "I'm going to marry that girl." He asked her out and she said no as she already
had a boyfriend. But it didn't take long and she parted with the boyfriend and the rest
is history-a 64 year long history with his beloved Josephine.
Sal was a hard worker, eager to provide for his quickly growing Catholic family. He had
four children, Steven, David Paul who died at two days old, Sharon and Christopher.
They were the twinkle in that good eye. Sal was also eager to do well by his employers.
He was an icon at Delta Drug in North Providence. He was so good at what he did, and
customers grew to love and rely on his knowledge and genuine care for their well
In the winter of 1963 he and Josephine made a rather daring purchase. Their friends,
Joe and Betty had just bought a beach house in Bristol. Sal and Jo thought it would
be great to own the house next door. It wasn't for sale, but they approached the owner
anyway, and they soon became the buyers of a little shack of a house on the Kickemuit
River. Their parents were appalled.
I share this story because in so many ways this little leap of faith and vision
dramatically affected the course of our family. Summers were now filled with
swimming and boating but also filled with relationships that were meant for destiny and
purpose. Through these dear friends, my parents and subsequently us kids, came to
know and pursue the Lord. Out of that relationship, and a love for the things of God,
Betty and Joe along with my parents and a few friends founded what is today
Community Covenant Church in Rehoboth. Sal and Jo served there for 40 years.
During that time my dad was ordained as a pastor. No one wants to date a pastor's
kid. Although he taught on occasion it didn't take long to see that his calling was in
pastoral care. I cannot count the number of people he counseled in that most private
capacity. Sal was also a man of prayer. He always had an index card in his breast
pocket with names of people to pray for throughout the day. He also developed this
little gimmick of giving people tongue depressors on which he had written a scripture
or word of encouragement. He was a funny guy that way.
Dad had always wanted to be a doctor but didn't see how he could provide for his
family and go back to school. But that dream never died, and in his 70's he completed
his Ph.D. He loved to learn. We have the books to prove it.
Love endures but the body not so much. At the age of 80 Sal finally retired from
pharmacy. He continued to counsel for at least another five years. More time was now
spent with Josephine and visits with the grandkids. He has six grandkids-Sharon and
Jim Hanon's girls, Jillian & Samara; Steve and Debbie Capozzoli's kids, Shelby and
Jeremy; and Chris and Linda Capozzoli's sweet ones, Madison and Taylor. In 2017 he
gained Travis DeLong, Jillian's husband. Grandkids provided him with new students.
Pain became a more constant companion. Walking became difficult and in June of
2020 a fall landed him at Silver Creek Manor in Bristol. It may not have been so bad if
it were not for the restrictions of Covid-19. No longer able to touch, he lost the comfort
of his beloved Josie. They remained true and strong for one another through multiple
daily phone calls. Burger King and Eskimo King became the food of royalty.
On November 11th it appeared that Sal had had a stroke. His body had had enough,
and frankly, he had had enough of his body. His mind was set on seeing Jesus. He
was ready. He had done all he could. And he had done so much. He passed quietly
on the evening of Saturday, November 14th. Josephine was able to be close through
the wonderful technology of an iPad. At his final breath at 5:55 p.m. all she could do
through tears was sing, "Grace, Grace, God's Grace...." Theirs had truly been a life of
grace for which they were always most grateful.
Please remember Josephine in your prayers, and feel free to call her for a visit-
because grace continues....
A memorial service will be held at His Providence Church, 262 Swansea Mall Drive,
Swansea, MA 02777 on Saturday, December 5, 2020 at 2 p.m.
Thank you for loving our Sal.