Caldarone, The Honorable Thomas J. Jr. of Providence, Rhode Island, age 91, passed away on November 5, 2018.
He was the son of the late Captain (P.F.D.) Thomas J. Caldarone and Margaret (Segrella) Caldarone. He was a bachelor all of his life. He was the brother of the late Theresa (Caldarone) Gianfrancesco and Louis A. Caldarone, and the brother-in-law of the late Joseph J. Gianfrancesco. He is survived by his sister-in-law, Kay (Nadeau) Caldarone, his nephew, Louis Allen Caldarone and his wife, Rachael, his niece, Marguerite Caldarone Burgess, two grandnieces, Shauna Burgess and Cory Caldarone, and a grandnephew, Lucas Caldarone and two great-grandnieces.
He was a Navy veteran of World War II, having served in the Atlantic Theater of Operations. He was educated in the Providence School System, having graduated as an honor student from Hope High School. Upon his discharge from the U.S. Navy in 1946, he attended the University of Rhode Island and graduated with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Industrial Engineering. After a brief career in engineering, he attended Boston University Law School, graduating with a Doctorate Degree of law in 1957. In that same year, he became a member of the Rhode Island Bar and was admitted to practice in the United States District Court for Rhode Island.
He was a member of the local, state and national committees of the Democratic Political Party. His many political activities included being elected President of the Providence Fourth Ward Democratic Club and as President of the Young Democratic Club of Rhode Island. He served as Rhode Island National Finance Committeeman during the Presidential campaign of the late President John F. Kennedy.
His first public service appointment occurred in 1959 when he was appointed Legal Counsel to the Director of Public Assistance of the City of Providence. In 1960, he was appointed Legal Counsel for the State Department of Social Welfare and in 1961, he was appointed Chief of Legal Services of this same Department. Thereafter, he became engaged in the full time practice of law with the Law Firm of Ragosta & Caldarone. In 1965, he was appointed to the Rhode Island Selective Service Board by the late President Lyndon B. Johnson. In 1968, he was appointed as a Governor's representative of the Rhode Island Consumers Council.
His many community activities included the election to the office of State Judge Advocate of the American Veterans of World War II (AMVETS) for fifteen years and the election to the position of National Judge Advocate of the National Department of AMVETS for two terms.
Judge Caldarone was a lifetime member of the Grand Lodge of Rhode Island Order of the Sons of Italy in America. He held the office of President of his Local Community Lodge currently chartered as the Renaissance-Alliance Lodge and the office of Grand Trustee, Grand Orator and Vice President of the State Grand Lodge of this organization. He was a charter member of the Verrazano Day Observance Committee. He was selected as the Man of the Year in 1980 by the Grand Lodge of the Order of The Sons of Italy of Rhode Island. He was elected to the Board of Directors and Treasurer of the Rhode Island International Institute. He served as a member of the Board of Directors and as President of the Rhode Island Opera Guild.
In the year 1980, he was awarded the rank of Cavalier in the Order of Merit by the President of the Republic of Italy in recognition of his many cultural, charitable and civic contributions to the Rhode Island community.
In 1975, he was appointed Chief Administrative Officer and Deputy Attorney General of the Department of Attorney General by the then Rhode Island Attorney General Julius Michaelson. Following his tenure with the Attorney General's Department, Governor Garrahy appointed him as Director of the State Department of Business Regulation, a position he held for seven years. In his capacity as Director of this Department, he became a member of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners and was elected by that group of State Insurance Commissioners to Chair the Zone I (Eastern States) executive body. While Director of this State Department, he was elected Chairman of the Rhode Island Board of Bank Incorporation, a state body which has the authority to grant State licenses to all State Chartered Financial Depository Institutions.
In the year 1984, he was appointed Associate Justice of the Rhode Island Superior Court by Governor Garrahy. He retired in the year 1994.
Following his retirement from the Court, he served as a Member of the Board of Directors of the DaVinci Center for Community Projects; as a Board Member of the Management Committee and past President of the Oak Crest Village Condominium Association; as a member of the Catholic Diocese of Providence Social Ministry; as a Member of the Steering Committee of the Rhode Island Christian Men's Breakfast Group, and as a Eucharistic Minister at the St. Peter and Paul Cathedral in Providence.
In April of 2016, Judge Caldarone received the Papal Honor of Knight of Saint Gregory the Great. The Knighthood was bestowed upon him by his Excellency Bishop Thomas Tobin at an investment ceremony at the Cathedral of Saints Peter and Paul.
He was a Member of the Rhode Island Bar Association for over fifty-five years prior to his death. He was a Member of the Aurora Civic Association and the Metacomet Country Club. He served as a Member of the University of Rhode Island Scholarship Foundation; a Member of University of Rhode Island’s 1892 Presidential Society and a Member of the Boston University Scholarship Foundation.
Relatives and friends are invited to visitation on Tuesday November 13, 2018 commencing at 8:30 a.m. at the Cathedral of Saints Peter and Paul, Providence, RI, prior to a Mass of Christian Burial at 10:00 a.m. Graveside burial, with Military Honors, will take place at the St. Francis Cemetery in Pawtucket, Rhode Island. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Catholic Foundation of The State of Rhode Island, One Cathedral Square, Providence, Rhode Island 02903. Funeral arrangements entrusted to the A.A. Mariani & Son Funeral Home.