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 • Calvary Cemetery
 • Winchester
 • Middlesex County
 • Massachusetts
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James Joseph Connolly
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Birth: Jan. 4, 1900
Woburn
Middlesex County
Massachusetts, USA
Death: Sep. 30, 1940
Woburn
Middlesex County
Massachusetts, USA

He was one of the most fascinating figures in sports for a period of ten years. Before the days of Track and Field at Woburn High School he competed on his own in various track events, winning many of them and making a name for himself in the sport. While still in high school he had become interscholastic mile champion twice and had won the famous Walter Scott Track Meet at Caledonia Grove. After high school Jack Ryder, the noted Boston College track coach, took Jimmy under his wing and showed him the art of indoor track. Jimmy turned out to be even more successful on the boards than in outdoor track. He entered Georgetown University in Washington, DC in 1919. He gained more fame there by winning competitions and smashing the track record. After graduating from Georgetown he joined the B. A. A. in Boston and won the Hunter mile three years in a row giving him full ownership of that trophy.
One of his track adverseries was Joie Ray of Chicago. The battles between them in both indoor and outdoor track events were legendary. Ray was so fast that in practice he often gave his opponents a fifteen to twenty yard lead in a mile race and would normally still beat them, except for Jimmy. Jimmy was one of the few who ever beat Ray without such a spot. They were both Olympians. Jimmy represented the United States twice at the Olympics, in 1920 and in 1924. Another Olympic rival was Paavo Nurmi of Finland. Jimmy and the 'Flying Finn' became good friends and staged many spectacular track events. They remained friends up to
Jimmy's sudden death due to a cerebral hemmorrhage at his home in Woburn, which came as a shock to everyone. He left his mother and a set of twin sisters. His father, a teamster, had died in 1909 when he was struck by a train.
The stadium at Woburn High School was named for Jimmy. 
 
Burial:
Calvary Cemetery
Winchester
Middlesex County
Massachusetts, USA
Plot: Sec. E, Range 9, Lot 17
 
Created by: William Sweeney
Record added: Apr 29, 2010
Find A Grave Memorial# 51769337
James Joseph Connolly
Added by: William Sweeney
 
James Joseph Connolly
Added by: William Sweeney
 
James Joseph Connolly
Cemetery Photo
Added by: Denise
 
 
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