Tom Morelli was born and raised in the Cove section of Stamford and graduated from Stamford High School in 1964, where he played varsity football. He joined the Air Force in 1966.
Stateside, Tom was stationed at Lackland Air Force Base and Amarillo AFB, both in Texas; MacDill AFB in Florida; and Seymour Johnson AFB in North Carolina. He was deployed overseas from 1967-1968, where he served in Thailand at two bases, one in Ubon, home of Wing 21 of the RTAF 2nd Air Division, and the other in Udorn, home of 2nd Air Division/23rd Wing Air Combat Command. At both bases, Tom was a crew chief on F-4C Phantom fighter bombers. He was responsible for keeping the aircraft in
combat-ready status to support ground troops in Vietnam and to provide aerial support for B-52 bombers. Tom earned the Air Force Good Conduct Medal, Connecticut Wartime Service Medal and Vietnam Service Medal. His squadron, the
555 Tactical Fighter Squadron, nicknamed the Triple Nickel, was awarded the Presidential Citation for extraordinary heroism in action against an armed enemy for shooting down six North Vietnamese MiG 21 aircraft. Tom was honorably discharged in 1970 with the rank of Staff Sergeant.
On returning stateside, Tom earned his bachelor’s degree in labor relations from UConn and worked for 30 years at Pitney Bowes in its engineering department, retiring in 2006. Tom served for 15 years as a senior Babe Ruth baseball coach and volunteered over the years at the St. Leo Catholic Church’s Fair, where he met his wife, Diane. Through St. Leo’s, Tom and Diane have been a sponsor for a young boy in Brazil. Tom also is a member of the Knights of Columbus. Tom and Diane have four children and seven amazing grandchildren.