Chuck Connors was an American actor, writer and a professional basketball and baseball player. For the course of his four decade career, he was best known for his roles in films of the 1950s, such as Pvt. Davey White, in the movie South Sea Woman, opposite Burt Lancaster, as Det. Ben Merrill in Hot Rod Girl and as Burn Sanderson in Old Yeller, opposite Dorothy McGuire. He was also known for his starring role on television in the 1960s ABC hit western series, The Rifleman. Towards the end of his career, he reprised his role as Lucas McCain in The Gambler Returns: The Luck of the Draw, with Johnny Crawford and as veteran police officer, Capt. Damian Wright in his last film, Three Days to a Kill.
Connors was born Kevin Joseph Aloysius Connors in Brooklyn, New York, second of two children and only son of Allan and Marcella Connors, emigrants from the Dominion of Newfoundland. His father was a longshoreman and his mother a homemaker. He was reared Roman Catholic and served as an altar boy at the Basilica of Our Lady of Perpetual Help in the Sunset Park neighborhood of Brooklyn.
According to his sister, Gloria Cole, she said Kevin was never close to his father, avoiding the father figure bond growing up, and he was always getting into trouble. Allan later took a job as night watchman.
His mother, Marcella, was absolutely marvelous to Kevin and his sister, and was an excellent cook who kept the family well fed despite the fact that they were poor. She took several jobs working as a janitor so her family wouldn’t to go hungry. Long before Kevin was a sports fan, she was a sports fan herself who always enjoyed listening to both the Brooklyn Dodgers and New York Giants on radio. She had a wonderful relationship with Kevin, who cherished her.