John “Wimpy” O’Connor

At 118 pounds, John O’Connor was never known as a power hitter, but his defensive skills spoke volumes during the 50’s and 60’s. He played football and basketball at St. Phillips’s High School, quitting football after scoring a touchdown because the coach didn’t play him enough. But football’s loss was softball’s gain when O’Connor was invited to play with Hall of Famer Moose Camillo’s Cherry Lounge and later with Camillo and Phil’s Lounge. O’Connor began as a short-stop, but with his great speed and soft hands, he was soon moved to center field. He helped Camillo win championships at Chicago and Kedzie and at Clarendon, beating the legendary Bobcats in the early 60’s. Fortune took a turn when O’Connor and five other legendary players left Moose Camillo to play for Phil Rizzo and O’Boyle’s. They captured the Clarendon championship with O’Boyle’s before O’Connor decided to hang up his cleats to persue a possible career in golf at age 31. Golf didn’t pan out for O’Connor, so he started with the City of Chicago as an electrician, a job he kept for 35 years. He and his wife, Ellen, have nine children and eighteen grandchildren. They live in Hoffman Estates.