Robert Joseph Caggige | Obituaries


Saint Albans – Robert Joseph Caggige, born on September 13th 1946, passed away peacefully at his home; surrounded by his wife, Ruth, and his children on November 1st, 2022. Bob bravely battled cancer for 10 years and wanted to thank Dr. Perrapato, Dr. Wallace and Dr. Ahmed of the UVM Cancer Center, Dr. Berchuck of the Dana-Farber Cancer institute – as well as members from the Franklin County Home Health Hospice for providing excellent and thoughtful medical care.

Bob is survived by his beloved wife of 36 years, Ruth, who resides in Saint Albans; his sister, Kay of Rutland; his niece Kristen, his Aunt Gloria, numerous Pratico and Caggige cousins; his five children and their partners; and his eight cherished grandchildren and godchildren.

Bob’s parents, Raphael “Ray” and Marion “Nonni” Caggige, raised Bob in an Italian-American enclave in Rutland, Vermont known as “The Gut” and was the youngest and only boy of three children. Bob’s parents and the immigrant community of Rutland instilled in Bob a sense of community, respect, and service. Bob graduated from Mount Saint Joseph Academy in 1964 and went on to serve in the United States Army Reserve from 1970 – 1976 during which time he graduated from the American International College with a Bachelor of Science in Finance. Following several years working in the corporate world in Boston and Washington, DC, Bob found his calling as an educator at Bellows Free Academy (BFA) in Saint Albans, Vermont. Bob served as a member of the National Education Association and the BFA Teacher’s Association – as the Treasurer and a member of the Negotiating Committee.

Bob was a serious but compassionate business teacher, a capable department chair, and a passionate and skilled athletics coach in both football and golf. Bob collaborated with Mr. Robert Ashton to establish the BFA golfing program and dedicated over 46 years to the program. He mentored young adults in the fine art of golf as well as the value of hard work and personal accountability. Bob’s unassuming but accomplished demeanor drew him close to a cohort of golfing buddies who relied on him for golf swing advice, good conversations, and many, many rounds of competitive golf.

Bob never let his golf game ruin a good walk and could be found wandering the Champlain Country Club, even in late fall or early spring, with no club in hand but perhaps holding the leash of Nicki, his adored and since deceased canine companion. Bob had a wide-ranging span of successes on the golf course as he was a three-time Club Champion; a Shark Shootout winner; and had a hole-in-one at all four par 3’s at the course. He served on the CCC board and on numerous committees – as well as on the State Golf Committee. Bob’s love of golf was paralleled by his love of Boston area sports teams such as the Red Sox, the Celtics and the NY Giants. But no matter how deeply he loved playing or following sports, it was his love and loyalty to his family that enriched Bob’s Life and informed legacy.

Bob and Ruth were colleagues at BFA for nearly 20 years before, at the behest of mutual friends, they independently travelled to Puerto Rico. The 1983 vacation forever changed the course of their lives as they both found a counterpoint in one another – they met their soulmate and kindred spirit. Over the course of their 36-year marriage, their love, respect, and dedication to each other radiated outwards and touched the hearts of their family, friends and community. Bob and Ruth travelled often, making friends across the US and tasting local cuisines in the many special places they visited. Their memories and fondness are the strongest for Puerto Rico, where they took countless romantic getaways with a group of close friends, and Sicily where Bob and Ruth explored the roots of Bob’s cultural background.

Bob and Ruth’s relationship buoyed the fates of those around them, the least of whom were Ruth’s five boys whom she had brought to their marriage and whom Bob selflessly co-parented. Bob was a stalwart provider and a role model. He impressed on the boys a sense of home, community and belonging that had been vital to Bob’s own childhood upbringing. His example gave the boys a vision of manhood and of parenting and showed the boys what it looked like to be a kind husband, a loving partner, and a good human being. Bob had a special connection to his grandchildren and godchildren, each of whom knew the secret places where he the hid candy and enjoyed (or endured) his silly, playful demeanor long before the term “dad Jokes” had become fashionable. He prided himself in being the chef of the house who routinely shared his Sunday spaghetti sauce atop slices of Italian bread appetizers before dinner.

In the summers, if Bob couldn’t be found napping in his reclining chair with a folded newspaper across his chest and the play-by-play of sports games in the background, then you could find Bob rummaging between the tomato filled rows of his garden to prepare a pre-dinner salad of arugula and dandelion stems or of cucumbers, tomatoes and basil.

Bob was a kid at heart, but the best and strongest sort of man that any of us – family or friend – could have dreamed to have met.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Friday, November 11th, 2022, at 11:00 AM at Holy Angels Church, 245 Lake Street, St. Albans followed by prayers of committal and military honors at the St. Albans Bay Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, please send donations to the Robert E. Ashton, Jr Memorial Scholarship, 375 Little Sunapee Road, New London, New Hampshire 03257.

Honored to be serving the family of Bob Caggige is the Heald Funeral Home, where messages of condolence are welcome at

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