William A. Cugno

William A. Cugno

Retired Maj. Gen.
William A. Cugno

NAPLES, Fla. —On Thursday, November 10th, William (Bill) Cugno, age 63, unexpectedly passed away, and both family and friends are deeply saddened by their loss.

Born April 4, 1948, in Waterbury, Conn., he was the son of Anthony and Marie Cugno of Sugar Land, TX and Cape Cod, MA. He earned a bachelor of arts degree in political science from Eastern Connecticut State University, and a master’s degree in public administration from Shippensburg University.

General Cugno served as the adjutant general and commander of the Connecticut Army and Air National Guard from June 1999 until his retirement in April 2005. Prior to becoming the adjutant general, during his 38-year military career, he served in several command and staff positions. General Cugno was a combat veteran of Vietnam where he served as a platoon leader from August 1968 to 1969 with the 9th Infantry Division. He joined the Connecticut Army National Guard in 1970 and held several staff and company command positions to include the 1st Battalion, 192nd (coastal) Artillery; Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 242nd Engineer Battalion; 130th Public Affairs Detachment. Following his company commands, General Cugno served as the Connecticut National Guard’s recruiting and retention manager for eight years. He then served as the commander of the 242nd Combat Engineer Battalion. Upon graduation from the U.S. Army War College, General Cugno was assigned as the commander of the 85th Troop Command, a brigade-size command, and served until 1994 when he was named the state director of plans, operations, and military support for the Connecticut Military Department.

In 1996, he served as the chief of staff for the City of Waterbury, CT and was responsible for the day-to-day operations of city government.

General Cugno earned many military decorations and awards including the Silver Star, Legion of Merit, Bronze Star, Meritorious Service Medal, Air Medal, Army Commendation Medal with Valor Device with three Bronze Oak Leaf Clusters, Army Reserve Components Achievement Medal with one Silver Oak Leaf Cluster, National Defense Service Medal with one Bronze Service Star, Vietnam Service Medal with three Bronze Service Stars, Humanitarian Service Medal, Armed Forces Reserve Medal with one Silver Hourglass Device, Army Service Ribbon, Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal with 60 Device; and the Combat Infantryman’s Badge. He was a member of many civic organizations including the National Guard Associations of the United States and Connecticut, the Association of the United States Army and the American Legion.

Bill is survived by his devoted parents, Marie and Anthony Cugno, his loving family, including sister Terri Kurkjian and brother-in-law, Andy Kurkjian, of Sugar Land, TX; brother Rick Cugno of Naples, FL; brother Tom Cugno of Cape Cod, MA; daughter Kara Cugno of Greenwich, CT; daughter Krista Lovquist and son-in-law Mark Lovquist of Southington, CT; granddaughters Sophia and Natalie Lovquist; nieces Bridget Marie Cugno and Anna Kurkjian; nephews Christopher Kurkjian and Anthony Cugno, his beloved Life Partner Angela Rinaldi of Naples Florida his ever faithful companion, Labrador Retriever Harley; and a host of extended friends and family.

While Bill’s professional career was noteworthy, his impact on the lives of his friends and family is even more significant. Bill was a true leader. He was looked up to by many as being a straight shooter — both honest and direct, yet always recognizing the value and contribution of others. Bill held himself to the highest standards of all and led by example with all that he did.

Bill loved his family most of all, but also had a passion for building street rods, fishing, and cooking. Bill was never without a BIG project done to perfection. He renovated his Naples, FL home with his partner Angela, and together they made it a happy and beautiful home, with frequent impromptu barbeques and meals for family and friends. Bill’s friends quickly learned that with the Cugno Family, it wasn’t just about the great Italian food, it was always about the conversations at the table with family and friends… conversations that were spirited, enthusiastic and went on through the night!

Bill celebrated life every day and lived it to the fullest, whether it was a mission on the battlefield or the Four Corner Motorcycle Trip around the Country. Family was always number one… Bill will be remembered and loved always, and his life will be celebrated in the memory of each person who knew him. Bill danced as though no one was watching, sang as though no one could hear, and loved like he had never been hurt… He was an amazing Life Partner, Son, Brother, Father, Grandfather, Uncle and Friend, and will be dearly missed by all that were fortunate enough to have known him…

A Memorial Service will be held at 10:00 am on Friday, December 2, 2011 at St Laurence Catholic Church, 3100 Sweetwater Blvd, Sugar Land, Texas.

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