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Noteworthy Alumni in the Field of Entertainment – Thomas “Christopher” Connelly ’59

As a Missouri Military Academy cadet, Thomas “Christopher” Connelly ’59 was an active leader and athlete among his fellow cadets. He served as sophomore, junior and senior class president, was captain of the football team his junior and senior year, and captain of the swimming team his freshman and senior year. Additionally, he competed on MMA’s baseball team, track and field team, and as a Fusileer.

After graduation, Connelly went on to become a successful actor and singer. He is best known for his role as Norman Harrington in Peyton Place, a popular nighttime soap opera drama that revolved around scandals such as affairs, shady business deals and murder.

Inspired by the story of Peyton Place, Connelly released a record of his own singing titled The Boy from Peyton Place in 1965, which featured pop songs like Young Love, Their Hearts Were Full of Spring, Let It Be Me and Too Young to Go Steady.

After his five-year run with Peyton Place, Connelly appeared in several other drama television series, including Griff and Gunsmoke, and in TV movies like Kit Carson and the Mountain Man, Corky, They Only Kill Their MastersBenji, and Liar's Moon.

He was also well-known for his star role in the television series Paper Moon as Moze, a family man living in the Midwest during the Great Depression who was determined to get rich by any means necessary. In this series, Jodie Foster played his daughter.

Later in his acting career, Connelly focused his talent in cult movies such as Manhattan Baby, The Bronx Warriors, and The Atlantis Interceptors.

After a two-year battle with lung cancer, Connelly passed in in December 1988, leaving a lasting impression and legacy on the entertainment industry.

MMA is proud to count Connelly among our noteworthy alumni.

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