Alpha Phi Delta Foundation

Chapter Histories - Sigma Chapter

Sigma Chapter in General

Sigma Chapter is Founded: 1927

On February 21, 1927, a local Italian fraternity at Boston University named Lambda Sigma Delta was merged into Alpha Phi Delta Fraternity becoming our Sigma Chapter. At the time of its installation, Sigma was the eastern most chapter of Alpha Phi Delta; it would go onto be the first of a trifecta of Chapters that marked the landscape of Boston from the late 1920s to late 1930s. The above photo of Sigma Chapter from 1934 is the oldest extant image we have of that Chapter. Of note, in the front row, third from the left is Frederick Pegnato who would go on to become National Secretary in 1959. Sigma Chapter was very successful throughout the 1930s, but was forced to close in 1943 as World War II depleted the number of male students from its campus.  But Sigma Chapter would be back... in fact, Sigma Chapter would go on to hold the not-so-enviable record as the Chapter that has opened-and-closed more times than any other. Sigma Chapter was active for a total of 36 years, but those years of activity were spread throughout five different time periods: 1927-43, 1946-56, 1959-61, 1963-71, 2000-01. A total of 289 Sigma Chapter brothers were initiated in the Chapter's history, with the vast proportion of them (208) initiated in the 1927-1956 period.

The Sigma Chapter Charter

When the Boston University's campus Italian fraternity known as Lambda Sigma Delta was merged into Alpha Phi Delta, our Sigma Chapter (Boston University) was born. The new chapter was presented with a charter dated the day of the Chapter's installation: February 21, 1927. The original Charter is maintained, intact, at the Fraternity’s National Archives. On the charter are the founders of our Sigma Chapter -- men who gave up their local fraternity to become our brothers: Louis Capasso, Alfred Cicerone, Americus D'Agostino, Joseph D'Amato, Anthony DiCecca, Angelo Gentile, Pasquale Laraia, Alfred LoPresti, Deonis Lupo, Alfred Malagodi, Francis Manzi, Rocco Mastrangelo, John Membrino, Gerald Miraldi, Gerlando Mobile, Joseph Petralia, Michael Placentino, Anthony Rigione, Roland Ruggiero, Anthony Serino, Sebastian Tanguoso, Carl Testa, Angelo Traniello, and Fred Trotta.

Sigma Chapter - Individuals

Fred P. Pegnato

National Secretary 1959

Sigma '33

Fred Paul Pegnato was born on August 30, 1914. A native of Chelsea, Massachusetts, he graduated from Chelsea High School in 1932, and went on to graduate from the Boston University Law School. He was initiated into Sigma Chapter in 1937. 

Fred Paul Pegnato was appointed National Secretary in September of 1959, but served for barely two months, when, as a victim of a heart attack, he died in office on November 25, 1959. 

The Fraternity was stricken with a deep sense of loss with Brother Pegnato’s unexpected and untimely passing at the age of 43. His predecessor as National Secretary, Joseph DeGuglielmo, who had been National Secretary since the 1940s, agreed to step back into the role of National Secretary to complete Pegnato’s term.

Stanley Raffa reported on the death of Pegnato as follows in the May 1960 edition of The Kleos:

“It is with a deep sense of loss, that we report the death of our National Secretary, Brother Fred P. Pegnato, Sigma. Brother Fred died of a heart attack on November 25, 1959. He was 43 years old. Brother Fred had served as National Secretary of Alpha Phi Delta for only two months, having been elected to that position last September at the Galen Hall Convention. Previous to that he had served as Assistant National Secretary for two years. 

“In the short time that he held National Office he exerted tremendous effort for his beloved Fraternity. One of his last official functions was the induction of the Beta Rho Chapter at Gannon College. He passed away even as he was preparing to receive the December issue of The Kleos for distribution. 

“Among the National Officers who paid their respects to Brother Fred and his family were National President, Joseph M. D'Urso, District Governors Steve Rubino and Gus Sigismondi, National Treasurer Carlo M. Vannicola, Past National Secretary Joseph A. DeGuglielmo, Brothers Horace Goffredo and Walter Primerano of the Building Trustees and Brother Frank Cavallaro, Past National President. 

“On Saturday evening, November 28, the ritualistic memorial service was conducted at the funeral home in the presence of 35 members of the Boston Alumni Club. 

"On behalf of the entire Fraternity we wish to express once more our sincerest condolences to the Pegnato family. 

“Meanwhile, National President Joseph M. D'Urso has appointed past National Secretary Joseph M. De Guglielmo to carry on the duties of the office.” 

Prior to his service as National Secretary, Brother Pegnato had served as the Assistant National Secretary for two years. During this period he exerted tremendous effort in keeping up with the steady, and often overwhelming, flow of correspondence necessary to tie the Fraternity together. 

During World War II, he served with assault troops in the North African Invasion, with G2 in the Sicily landings, and with the CID in France and Germany. He was overseas 35 months and held letters of commendation from Generals Patton and Patch as well as a Presidential Unit Citation.

A practicing attorney in Boston, he was active in many civic and fraternal organizations including Benevolent Protected Order of Elks, American Legion, and the Order of the Sons of Italy. 

Brother Fred Pegnato, was survived by his, widow, Carmela Pegnato and his son, Fred P. Pegnato, Jr. His youngest Brother Sal is Sigma '53. On November 30, following a Solemn Requiem High Mass at the Our Lady Help of Christians Catholic Church, Brother Pegnato was interred in Newton Cemetery in Newton, Massachusetts.

Stephen (Stefano) Rubino

First District Governor 1952-61, 1970-85

Sigma '38

Stefano (Stephen) Rubino was born in Boston, Massachusetts on May 17, 1919. He attended Boston University where he was initiated into our Sigma Chapter in 1938; he received his Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration in 1941.

Brother Rubino entered the United States Marine Corps as a private in 1942, in the midst of World War II. He emerged as a Second Lieutenant in 1945. While in the service of his country he was the recipient of the Flore deGuerre and the Presidential Citation. 

Returning from the war, he resumed his job for the Liberty Mutual Insurance Company and would later go on to start his own insurance agency.

Active in Alpha Phi Delta since his undergraduate days, Steve served as First District Governor in Boston area from 1951 to 1961 and again from 1970 until the district was formally dissolved in 1988. Brother Rubino was also a staunch and longtime member of the Boston Alumni Club and served as its President for over 20 years until its closing in 1991.

He and his wife Mary (and often in the early years with their four daughters) were in attendance at all but one National Convention from 1951-1995; this was a record of which Brother Rubino was extremely proud. The only National Convention that Brother Rubino was known to have missed -- in a string of 45 years of attendance –  was the 1987 National Convention which was held in Toronto, Canada. Thus he attended every Convention from 1951-1986 and from 1988-1995,

Brother Rubino suffered a heart attack and died while attending a pre-season Red Sox baseball game in Florida on March 2, 1997, at the age of 77. He and his wife Mary had just celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary a few months earlier.

Amleto Michael Di Giusto

Grand Pro Consul 1946-48

Sigma '28

Amleto Michael Di Giusto was born in Boston, Massachusetts, May 8, 1909 to Lorenzo and Maria DiGiusto. He was reared in the town of Somerville, Massachusetts, where he graduated from Somerville High School in 1928. He entered Boston University in 1928, and soon after his graduation, he enrolled at the Boston University Law School in 1933. 

Brother Di Giusto started law practice in Somerville with a fraternity brother, Anthony DiCecca (Sigma '27), but had to close his office from 1943-45 while serving in the United States Army Air Corp during World War II. After the War he served as attorney with the Office of Rent Control, then as Executive Director of the Somerville Housing and Redevelopment Authority. Later he moved to Waterbury, Connecticut where he worked for the Public Housing Administration. 

Initiated into Sigma Chapter (Boston University) in 1928, Brother Di Giusto served as Chapter Consul for two terms. He served as the Fraternity's eighth Grand Pro Consul (National Vice President) from 1946-48. In 1951 Brother Di Giusto took on a new role in the Fraternity when he served as Chairman of the 1951 National Convention -- the first Convention that was held as a resort convention.

Di Giusto has many reasons to thank Alpha Phi Delta. Anthony DiCecca of Sigma Chapter, introduced Di Giusto to Rocco Mastrangelo (Sigma '27, later, First District Governor), who introduced Di Giusto to  his future wife in 1938. DiGiusto reciprocated by introducing Mastrangelo to his future wife at the 1948 Convention. 

These three brothers spun a web of friendship; it was broken by the death of Mastrangelo a few months after his wedding in 1948. The girl Mastrangelo had introduced to DiGiusto was Mary Imelda McNamara. They were married on August 14, 1938. Di Giusto died June 9, 2002 at age 93.