James Douglas "Doug" Connelly

Obituary of James Douglas "Doug" Connelly

James Douglas "Doug" Connelly, 61, of Lexington, passed away unexpectedly on Sunday, September 5, 2021. The family will receive friends from 5:00-7:00pm on Thursday, September 9, 2021 at Thompson Funeral Home of Lexington. Funeral services will be held at 4:00pm on Friday, September 10, 2021 at Northside Baptist Church, Lexington, SC.

Born August 9, 1960 in Columbia, SC, Doug was the son of James William "Billy" and Dolores Connelly. He grew up as an exceptional baseball player who loved hunting, fishing, kayaking, hiking and being outdoors.  At 24, he married his wife of 36 years, Gina (Chavis) Connelly. Their dearly loved daughter, Christine Connelly Meetze, was born in 1993.  Doug was a dedicated husband, father, grandfather and hard-working family man. He was a fearless leader, mentor and a great friend.  He is loved by many that can testify to his loving spirit. 


Doug graduated from Lower Richland High School in 1978 and then received a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice from the University of South Carolina, but was a dedicated Clemson fan for life. A Captain with the SC Highway Patrol, Doug retired after 25 years of unwavering service. He considered entering into ministry, but was drawn back to the Patrol to protect and serve for another 10 years in Communications. After his second retirement, he discovered his “joy” job at Carolina Power and Equipment as the “Tractor Guy” and greatest storyteller ever with his Thursday night epistles.  


Throughout his life, he ministered with his Band of Brothers in his Wild at Heart group (Ransomed Heart Ministries) “preach the gospel at all times, use words only when necessary” (Saint Francis of Assisi). He was as a kind, generous, intelligent man who inspired people with his faith and hope in God through a great sense of humor and amiable personality. He loved to working with youth and mentoring them through the annual youth hunts and sharing his love of the outdoors through ATDO Ministries and SCDNR. He was a member (and former deacon) of Northside Baptist Church and the Troopers Association.   


Doug leaves behind his wife, Gina (Chavis) Connelly; daughter, Christine Meetze (David) of Newberry; and his beloved granddaughter, Charlie Grace Meetze.  He is also survived by his parents, James William (Billy) and Dolores Connelly; his brother, Glen Connelly (Lesa); and sister, Shannon Graham (Paul); nieces, Michelle Brigman (Ben), Rachel Lasher (Steven), and Ashlyn Graham; nephews, Thomas Graham and Daniel Connelly; grand-nephew, Everett Brigman; and grand-niece, Audrey Lasher; along with many friends and family in Christ. 


Memorial tributes may be directed to Lovinglifemissions.org. A Missionary Aviation Family serving in Thailand and Burma with Free Burma Ranger. Free Burma Ranger (FBR) provides medical and evangelistic relief and inspiration by bringing help, hope and love to all faiths in commitment to liberty, justice and service.

Thompson Funeral Home of Lexington is assisting the Connelly family.

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5:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Thursday, September 9, 2021
Thompson Funeral Home of Lexington
4720 Augusta Road
Lexington, South Carolina, United States

Funeral Service

4:00 pm
Friday, September 10, 2021
Northside Baptist Church
4347 Sunset Blvd
Lexington, South Carolina, United States


5:00 pm
Friday, September 10, 2021
Southland Memorial Gardens
700 West Dunbar Road
West Columbia, South Carolina, United States
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James Douglas "Doug"