Joseph J. Comprone, Professor Emeritus of English at the University of Connecticut, whose pioneering work in rhetoric and composition took him across the country and around the world, died on May 1, in Louisville, KY. He was 74.
Joe lived the life of an itinerant scholar, driven by a desire to build programs and campuses that would best nurture and serve the needs of students, faculty, and community alike. He left no campus unchanged for the better, but among his proudest achievements are the Ph.D. in Rhetoric and Composition at the University of Louisville, the Maritime Studies Program and the student center on the UConn Avery Point Campus, a Fulbright for the 2010/11 academic year, and the careers and accomplishments of his students.
Dr. Comprone wrote five books, published more than 50 refereed articles and 10 refereed book chapters, and presented more than 90 papers at professional conferences. He directed 20 dissertations, helping to shape generations of scholarship in Rhetoric and Composition. His students and colleagues remember him as a visionary, an inspirational and supportive leader, someone who fostered the careers of others, and whose faith in what he did influenced every life he touched and shaped the institutions where he worked.
Joe was preceded in death by his parents, Jack and Anne Comprone, of Groton, Connecticut.
He is survived by his wife, Connie (Dugan) Comprone, children, Christopher (Leah) Stallings, Raphael (Bojana) Comprone, Angela (Dave) Yantorno, and Joseph (Marie) Comprone, grandchildren Susan, Alec, Nautica, Jayd, Chloe, Ella, Skye, Sofia, and Ruby, and siblings, Jacquelyn Weber, Dennis Comprone, and AnneMarie Bellenoit.
A memorial will be held on July 12, 2017 from 5:00-7:00 p.m, in the Branford House on the Avery Point Campus in Groton, CT., where he could look out on Long Island Sound from his office window.
Joe loved being on the water. He loved sailing, taking the ferries, and going out on the fishing boats. He loved to take the train from New London into New York, and to listen to the ships’ foghorns early in the morning. He loved the Yankees, a well made martini, raw oysters, the blues, and every movie ever made. And his children and grandchildren. He loved them most of all.
In lieu of flowers, the family has requested that donations be made to the Joseph John Comprone Scholarship Fund. This scholarship will help fund the education of an Avery Point student pursuing a degree in either Maritime Studies or Marine Sciences. Click the link below to donate, or make checks payable to:
2390 Alumni Drive, #3206
Storrs, CT 06269