Dr. Greg Capelli

February 5, 1948 - December 12, 2012
Dr. Greg Capelli

Gifts & Memorial Donations

Dr. Greg Capelli, 64, of Lanexa, Virginia died on Wednesday, December 12, 2012 in Williamsburg, Virginia. Dr. Capelli recently retired as Professor Emeritus of Aquatic Biology at the College of William & Mary after 38 years of service. He earned his M.S. and Ph.D. in Zoology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Greg was born on February 5, 1948 in St. Louis, Missouri. He is survived by his wife, Evelyn Reed; his children, Kara Capelli and Matthew Capelli;his stepsons and their families, Frank, Lucy, Gregory, Samuel and Ethan Albert, Daniel and XiaHua Albert; his mother, Emma Capelli; and his siblings, Patricia Heidenrich, Michael Capelli, Mark Capelli, David Capelli and their families. Greg was a lover of the outdoors, gardener, photographer, avid hunter, fisherman, and persistent seeker of knowledge. Most of all, he was a dedicated family man.

As a professor, Dr. Capelli served the College community as a scholar, researcher and teacher of aquatic ecology. Additionally, he dedicated his energy to the development of a course on human nature that explores how biology informs the nature of human thought and behavior. The major focus of his career was always on students, and through his dedication to excellence Professor Capelli developed generations of informed, thoughtful citizens

Throughout his career, Professor Capelli was a tireless champion of efforts to preserve the College Woods and Lake Matoaka for teaching and research, and as a place for quiet reflection. He was instrumental in the establishment of the Keck Environmental Laboratory on Lake Matoaka, and upon his retirement the College dedicated Capelli Cove in his honor. Colleagues and students alike have been deeply impacted by his keen intellect, wisdom and compassion.

A memorial gathering will be held in honor of Professor Capelli at the College of William & Mary School of Education (Monticello Avenue, Williamsburg, Virginia) on Sunday, December 16 at 2:00 p.m. Please consider memorial contributions in his honor to the Greg Capelli Fund of the Biology Department at the College of William & Mary, which supports faculty-student mentoring teams to work on environmental projects. Donations to the Williamsburg Hospice House are also welcome.


Sunday, December 16, 2012
12:00 AM

William & Mary School of Education - Directions
301 Monticello Avenue
Williamsburg, VA 23185

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  • December 14, 2012
    Marilyn Scott says:
    Evelyn, Please accept my condolences upon the loss of your husband. You and your family have my deepest sympathy.

  • December 13, 2012
    Jim Messmer says:
    Greg and I knew each other at St. Louis University High School when we were on the rifle team together. I remember him quite well as a thoughtful, intelligent, quiet young man; and from the comments about his impact on students at William and Mary it's apparent that he grew into an outstanding teacher who made a difference. As a retired professor myself, that's the ultimate goal we can strive for. He will be sorely missed.

  • December 13, 2012
    Barry Zeigler says:
    I have known Greg since our boys were in elementary school together. Later in life we spent weekends at motorcycle race tracks while the boys raced motocross. I was also fortunate enough to go to the gun range with him many times. Each time at the range was an education in muzzle velocities and shot angles. Every time I was with Greg I either learned something new or looked at things a little differently. During Gregís illness I was fortunate enough to be able to spend some precious time with him out on his boat, bird watching on the York River, running errands and lots of time just talking about life. Greg could take a simple observation like the change in the color of the river water and turn it into an hour long conversation about micro organisms, which would ultimately lead to a conversation about how we all got here. He was a fascinating man to talk to and I am so proud to be able to call him my friend. My entire family will miss him terribly.

  • December 13, 2012
    John Erkmann says:
    I was sad to hear from a friend of Greg's death. I knew him from his days involved with the St.Louis U. High School Rifle team. Even then we both shared an interest in the outdoors.

  • December 15, 2012
    Ruth A. Beck says:
    May you have the strength you need for today and the hope you need for tomorrow. Thoughts and Prayers are with you at this difficult time. Greg made the world a better place by his presence. For 38 years he was my colleague and friend. Ruth Beck