On this day in 1976, the funeral of Carlo Gambino, the 'boss of the bosses' in the Mafia, took place in New York. Mr Gambino, considered to be the most powerful of the leaders of the American Mafia, died in his sleep at his home on Friday. It is thought he suffered a heart attack.
The funeral, which was ticket only, was held at the Church of Our Lady of Grace in a quiet residential area of Brooklyn. Plain clothes officers and FBI agents were among the crowds outside the church. No trouble was expected as Mafia families have a history of respecting funerals, but the FBI had gone to find out who might succeed Mr Gambino as head of the family.
Carlo Gambino, in a $7,000 (£4,400) bronze coffin, was buried next to his wife Catherine who died in 1971. The death of Mr Gambino had long been expected following his latest spate of heart trouble.
Attempts had been made to arrest and deport him for his involvement in the attempted hijack of an armoured car in Sicily but he was considered too ill to make the journey back. He was allowed to remain in the country and died at his home in Massapepequa, NY.
Born in Sicily in 1902, Mr Gambino moved to America in 1921 and began moving up within the Mafia. He became head of his Mafia family in 1957. At the height of its power his family was considered to be the most influential in all America.
Speculation was then over who would become leader. Anielio Dellacroce, who once challenged Mr Gambino for the leadership of the family, and Carmino Galente, head of another New York family were put forward. Whoever was to take over would control a 1,000 strong network of staff, employed to run Mr Gambino's multimillion dollar empire of gambling, narcotics and loan-sharking.
Sunday, 18 October 2009
The second in our series of eight, featuring the work of artist John Pugh, who paints 3D murals on the sides of buildings.
Taylor Hall, California State University, Chico, California.
The Doric-style columns are actually nothing but paint.
If corn oil is made from corn, and vegetable oil is made from vegetables, then what is baby oil made from?
If electrity comes from electrons, does morality come from morons?
Why do the 'alphabet' song and 'Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star', have the same tune?
Stop singing and read on .........
Do illiterate people get the full effect of Alphabet Soup?
Does pushing the elevator button more than once make it arrive