CSM Thomas R. Capel, USA, Ret.
CSM Thomas R. Capel, USA, Ret.
Command Sergeant Major Thomas R. Capel a native of Ellerbe, NC, graduated from Richmond Senior High School and attended Richmond Community College. He entered the military service on 26 October 1977 and completed basic training at Fort Jackson, South Carolina, followed by the completion of the 11B (Infantry) Advance Individual Training at Fort Benning, Georgia. His first assignment with the 82nd Airborne Division, 1st Battalion, 325th Airborne Infantry Regiment.
Command Sergeant Major Capel has had a diverse career with assignments and positions from Fort Kobbe, Panama, serving as an Infantry Squad Leader; Fort Jackson, SC., serving as a Senior Drill Sergeant. He reported back to Fort Bragg, NC., in 1987 and assumed duty as an Instructor and later as a Senior Instructor with the XVIII Airborne Corps Noncommissioned Officer Academy. In 1989, he continued his duties at Fort Bragg as a Platoon Sergeant and Operation Sergeant with Alpha Company, 2nd Battalion, 505th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division.
In 1993, he was assigned to the U.S. Army Europe’s 7th Army Headquarters Brigade as the Operation Sergeant, with duty at the Ramstien Air base, Germany. He returned to Fort Bragg, NC where he served as the First Sergeant for Bravo Company, Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 2nd Battalion, 505th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division. In 1998, he was assigned to the 1st Region ROCT as the Military SCI Instructor at the Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta, GA. He was further assigned to the Task Force Mechanized Battalion as an Active Component /Reserve Component Battalion Command Sergeant Major. In 2001, CSM Capel was reassigned to Fort Bragg, NC., where he served as the Battalion and Brigade Sergeant Major for in the 1st Brigade Combat Team, 504th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 82nd Airborne Division.
He was selected in May of 2006 as the 22nd Command Sergeant Major of the 82nd Airborne Division, and CSM Capel deployed six time, including one deployment to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom as the Brigade Command Sergeant Major, of the 1st Brigade Combat Team, 504th Parachute Infantry Regiment, and five deployments to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom, which two of which he was the Command Joint Task Force 82 RC East (CJTF-82), upon his returned in 2010, he was selected as the United States Army Europe (USAEUR) Command Sergeant Major. He later deployed to assume the position as the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) Command Sergeant Major in Afghanistan for 18 months.
Command Sergeant Major Capel has earned numerous awards, including the Defense Superior Service Medal, Legion of Merit (1st Oak leaf cluster), the Bronze Star Medal (3 oak leaf cluster), the Meritorious Service Medal (3 oak leaf cluster), the Army Commendation Medal (9 oak leaf cluster), the National Defense Medal, the NCO Professional Development Ribbon, the Army Service Ribbon, the Overseas Service Ribbon, the Saudi Kuwait Liberation Medal, the Kuwait Liberation Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Drill Sergeant Badge, the Combat Infantry Badge (2nd award), and the Master Parachutist Badge.
Command Sergeant Major Capel retired in October 2014, and actively working as the Senior Enlisted Advisor for “Feherty’s Troops First Foundation” He resides in Fayetteville, NC., with his wife Marissa.