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Thomas Leonard Connelly

October 7, 1933 April 8, 2016
Thomas Leonard Connelly
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Obituary for Thomas Leonard Connelly

Tom, a native of Glencoe, Minnesota, always wanted to be a pilot. Following graduation in Rochester, Minnesota, he married his college sweetheart, Virginia. In 1951, he entered the Air Force as an aviation cadet. He was commissioned and received navigator wings the following year. In June 1958, he entered pilot training and was assigned to Hickam AFB, Hawaii, where he flew C124s and earned his bachelor’s degree. In 1965, he was assigned as a C-124 instructor pilot, and he was selected as the wing’s initial cadre pilot for the C-141 program. This led to assignments at Tinker and Altus AFBs in Oklahoma, where he was a C-141 instructor and member of the C5A initial cadre, delivering the first C-5 to the Military Airlift Command in 1969. He was assigned C-5 flying duties at Travis in 1973 with a follow-on assignment to Headquarters 22nd Air Force, where he served as executive officer and earned his master’s degree. In 1977, Tom was assigned to Dover AFB as comptroller and then as deputy commander of Resource Management. In 1981, he returned to Travis as deputy commander for Resource Management. After 33 years of active duty service, he retired from the Air Force in 1984 as a Colonel and worked as a commercial real estate appraiser. His military decorations and awards include the Bronze Star, Meritorious Service Medal, Joint Service Commendation, Air Force Commendation, Combat Crew Medals, small arms expert, and multiple outstanding unit awards. He served in Vietnam and Thailand. When Tom wasn’t flying, he loved spending time outdoors camping and fishing with family. He and Virginia made regular fishing trips to Florida with his brother Keith and wife Corinne. Tom is preceded in death by his wife Virginia in 2000, and is survived by his seven children, Steve, Michael, James, Terry, Carrie, Thomas and Robert his nine grandchildren and his brother Keith and sisters Mary Jane, Peg, Patsy, and Marianne. Visitation and viewing will be held April 18 at 5:00 – 8:00 p.m. at McCune Garden Chapel in Vacaville. A celebration of his life will be held April 19 at 12:00 p.m., also at McCune with a 2:00 p.m. burial at the Sacramento Valley National Cemetery. The family has requested that instead of sending flowers you consider making a donation in memory of Tom to Assisi Heights Department of Development, 1001 14th St., Northwest Rochester, MN 55901 Checks should be made out to Sisters of St. Francis Retirement Fund with a notation that the funds are in memory of Tom Connelly for Sr. Leontine. For anyone comfortable with on line giving it can be done at www.rochesterfranciscans.org
and clicking on the Giving Opportunities tab.

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Previous Events

Visitation

Monday

18

Apr

5:00 PM 4/18/2016 5:00:00 PM - 8:00 PM 4/18/2016 8:00:00 PM
McCune Garden Chapel

212 Main St.
Vacaville, CA 95688

McCune Garden Chapel
212 Main St. Vacaville 95688 CA
United States

Service

Tuesday

19

Apr

12:00 PM 4/19/2016 12:00:00 PM
McCune Garden Chapel

212 Main St.
Vacaville, CA 95688

McCune Garden Chapel
212 Main St. Vacaville 95688 CA
United States

Cemetery Details

Location

Sacramento Valley National Cemetery Final Resting Place

5810 Midway Rd.
Dixon, CA 95620

5810 Midway Rd. Dixon 95620 CA
United States
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