John Concannon

From: Galway, Ireland  Current City: St. Paul, MN
"Life’s been great in this country. I like this country a lot. I like Ireland a lot. I wish I could live in both Minnesota and Ireland."
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During his travels, John Concannon visited Russia, Japan, Taiwan, France, England, and several states within the U.S. His path ultimately led to his a city with a long history of Irish influence: St. Paul, Minnesota.

Mr. Concannon was born in Ireland in 1947. Although his family owned a 70-acre farm, only ten acres were suitable for farming; they struggled to get by. In pursuit of a better life, John and his family decided to immigrate to the United States.

At the age of 16, John moved to Brookline, Massachusetts, a city in the Great Boston area with a large population of Irish immigrants. John’s friends were mainly second-generation Americans; they could sympathize with his experience. Mr. Concannon attended an American high school for two years. His high school graduation correlated closely to the onset of the Vietnam War draft, and John volunteered to serve in the army. During his tour in Vietnam, he was injured and spent eight months in a Filipino hospital.

Once he was discharged, Mr. Concannon took to traveling around the world. He worked several odd jobs including house painting and teaching English. The Irish community in St. Paul temporary cured Mr. Concannon of his travel bug. And after briefly returning to Ireland, he once again moved to St. Paul, his current home. John is now retired but contributes to multiple Irish-American community organizations.

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