A Legacy Lives On
For Bill Spadafora '66, coming to the Academy felt natural; his older brother, Chuck, was a member of the Class of 1963. "I was exposed—probably over-exposed—for the first two years he was there, before I went to New Mexico Military Institute for prep school," Bill said. "I was from a small town, very involved in athletics, and my eyes were as big as saucers the first time I saw the Academy."
The brothers from Pennsylvania thrived at the Academy, brought home Brigade Boxing Championships and went on to serve their nation—Chuck in the Marines, where he reached the rank of captain, and Bill in the Navy, where he served for 10 years and became a lieutenant commander before joining Chuck's business back in Pennsylvania.
For decades, they gave back to the alma mater that served them so well, showing their support for Navy athletics, the unrestricted Naval Academy Fund, their class projects and other initiatives. More recently, both included gifts to the Naval Academy Foundation in their estate plans—a commitment that became all the more poignant when Chuck passed away in August after a valiant fight with cancer.*
"We supported the Academy throughout our lives and wanted to do so as long as we could," said Bill. "We believed in the place, what it stands for, the type of person it produces—whether for military or civilian life. I want to continue to be a part of that and leave the world better than I found it, and I know Chuck did, too. He always said, 'When you have a good meal, tip well.' The Academy is such a good place, and I want to make sure it's around for the next guy. I want to feel a part of its continued success—and so did Chuck."
*Chuck Spadafora unfortunately passed away as we were working on this story. His legacy will live on at the Academy thanks to his gifts.
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