Chuck Connors (April 10, 1921 – November 10, 1992) was an American actor, writer, and professional basketball and baseball player. His best known role from his forty-year film career was Lucas McCain in the 1960s ABC hit Western series The Rifleman.
Connors was born Kevin Joseph Connors in Brooklyn, New York, second of two children and only son of Allan and Marcella Connors, emigrants from the Dominion of Newfoundland. He was raised Roman Catholic and served as an altar boy at the Basilica of Our Lady of Perpetual Help in the Sunset Park neighborhood of Brooklyn.
His sister found out Connors didn't like his first name and was looking at a number of possible first-name changes: he tried out "Lefty" and "Stretch" before settling on "Chuck", because while playing first base, he would always yell, "Chuck it to me, baby, chuck it to me!" to the pitcher. The rest of his teammates and fans soon caught on and the name stuck. He loved the Dodgers despite their losing record during the 1930s. Connors knew that he too would be a Dodger, like: Jackie Robinson, Gil Hodges, Pee Wee Reese, Carl Furillo, Duke Snider, Roy Campanella, Billy Cox, Ralph Branca, Preacher Roe and Carl Erskine, the...
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