Major David Scott Connolly was born in Newton, MA on December 12, 1967 tothe proud parents Peg & Gerry Connolly and brother to Joe, Gerry, Paul, Marguerite, Nancy and Greg. Growing up in Newton Highlands, David attended school and enjoyed summers at Crystal Lake with his family and friends. His path to adulthood, however, was not your typical course. Before completing high school, David decided to enlist in the Coast Guard. It was there that he found strength, determination, focus, and purpose in life.
After serving in the Coast Guard and receiving an honorable discharge, David enlisted in the Army, and like many of his family members, he set his sights on the Heights. With the guidance and support of Father Woods, David enrolled in the Boston College School of Advancing Studies and was subsequently accepted to the ROTC program. Military training combined with the Jesuit philosophy of education and social justice became the foundation of David’s young career.
While at BC, David earned the respect and admiration of his peers and inspired confidence in others. He won the Boston College ROTC program’s Veterans of Foreign Wars Award in 1993 and the Reserve Officers’ Association Award in 1994.
After graduating from Boston College Cum Laude in 1994, he received a commission as a second-lieutenant in the United States Army. He attended Suffolk University Law School, from which he graduated Magna Cum Laude, Juris Doctorate in 2002.
Upon joining the Massachusetts Bar, he was hired by the Suffolk County District Attorney’s office in Boston as an Assistant District Attorney and prosecutor. During this time, Dave found the love of his life, Debra Toran. They were married in the spring of 2003 in front of family and friends in an emotion filled day. Sadly, Dave lost both of his parents shortly thereafter in the weeks that followed.
In 2004, with the growing need for experienced officers to support the war on terrorism, Dave volunteered to return to active duty in the Army, putting his life and career on hold. He was assigned to the Combined Joint Special Operations Task Force at Bagram Airbase in Afghanistan. Tragically, on April 6, 2005, Major David Scott Connolly perished in a CH-47 Chinook helicopter crash while serving with the 7th Special Forces Group during Operation Enduring Freedom. Dave was posthumously awarded the Bronze Star.
Major Connolly was the first graduate of Boston College’s ROTC program to lose his life in hostile action since the Vietnam War.
Dave lived his life in service to others. Dave’s commitment to his country, family, education, truth and justice are evident in the course he charted through life, and the legacy he left behind. As a Major in the United States Army, a Suffolk County District Attorney, and an avid fisher of Boston Harbor, Dave made positive changes in the world in which we live.