February Frenzy Awards
LT. BRIAN DALY CONLAN, U.S.M.C.,MOST VALUABLE PLAYER AWARDLt. Brian Conlan, United States Marine Corps, was a 1957 graduate of Our Lady of Sorrows School. He graduated from St. Benedict’s Prep in 1961 and Seton Hall University in 1965. During his academic years, Brian played football, soccer and was involved in the wrestling team. Brian joined the Marine Corps after his college graduation and was commissioned a 1st Lieutenant. Shortly afterward he was assigned to combat duty in Vietnam. On January 25, 1967, Lt. Conlan was killed when he stepped on a landmine in Da Nang, Vietnam. His memory lives on. His sister, Madelaine Conlan Pierson, was a longtime member of the Our Lady of Sorrows School Community, and his father, Brian “Bud” Conlan was a former trustee and president of the Township of South Orange.
STAFF SGT. PETER S. CONNOR, U.S.M.C. SPORTSMANSHIP AWARD
Staff Sgt. Peter S. Connor, United States Marine Corps, was born and raised in South Orange. He graduated from Our Lady of Sorrows in 1946, and later graduated from Columbia High School. He entered the Marine Corps in February of 1952. He served overseas in Korea, Okinawa and Vietnam. Sgt. Connor died in Vietnam on March 8, 1966, serving as a platoon sergeant. He chose to sacrifice his own life by covering a grenade in order to protect the lives of his own men. Sgt. Connor became the Marine Corps’ fifth Medal of Honor recipient from the Vietnam War, and the first Congressional Medal of Honor recipient from the Village of South Orange. His memory lives on, both in our parish and in our community. His twin sister, Mary Louise Connor, is a member of our parish and an extremely devoted member of the South Orange First Aid Squad.
LT. JOHN RICHARD McDONOUGH, U.S.N. BEST DEFENDER AWARD
Lieutenant John Richard McDonough graduated from Our Lady of Sorrows School in 1954. He attended St. Benedict’s Prep and Villanova University. After college graduation he was commissioned an Ensign in the United States Navy, and through hard work became a naval aviator - a lifelong dream. He was assigned to the aircraft carrier Coral Sea and flew missions in Vietnam, at one point flying missions for 11 consecutive months instead of the usual 6 months. When returning to Vietnam for another tour of duty, and about to fly a night mission, the carrier’s catapult mechanism malfunctioned and his aircraft did not attain flying speed. Nevertheless, he had the presence of mind to avoid crashing into the aircraft carrier by veering the plane into the sea, thus saving the lives of his co-pilot and navigator, both of whom were recovered safely. However, Lt. McDonough’s body has never been found, and he is still listed as missing in action. His memory lives on in our community. His brother Christopher was a member of our parish, as is his sister Roseanne McDonough. His niece, Christine, graduated from Our Lady of Sorrows with the Class of 2000.