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John Connally

Died when: 76 years 108 days
Star Sign: Pisces

 

John Connally John Bowden Connally Jr. (February 27, 1917 – June 15, 1993) was an American politician. He served as the 39th Governor of Texas and as the 61st United States Secretary of the Treasury. He began his career as a Democrat and later became a Republican in 1973. Born in Floresville, Texas, Connally pursued a legal career after graduating from the University of Texas at Austin. During World War II, he served on the staff of James Forrestal and Dwight D. Eisenhower before transferring to the Asiatic-Pacific Theater. After the war, he became an aide to Senator Lyndon B. Johnson. When Johnson assumed the vice presidency in 1961, he convinced President John F. Kennedy to appoint Connally to the position of United States Secretary of the Navy. Connally left the Kennedy Administration in December 1961 to run for Governor of Texas, and he held that position from 1963 to 1969. In 1963, Connally was riding in the presidential limousine during Kennedy's assassination, and was seriously wounded. During his governorship, he was a conservative Democrat. In 1971, Republican President Richard Nixon appointed Connally as his Treasury Secretary. In this position, Connally presided over the removal of the U.S. dollar from the gold standard, an event known as the Nixon shock. Connally stepped down from the Cabinet in 1972 to lead the Democrats for Nixon organization, which campaigned for Nixon's re-election. Connally was a candidate to replace Vice President Spiro Agnew after the latter resigned in 1973, but Nixon chose Gerald Ford instead. Connally sought the Republican nomination for president in the 1980 election, but withdrew from the race after the first set of primaries. Connally did not seek public office again after 1980 and died of pulmonary fibrosis in 1993.
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