The Dallas Family





Clan Leaders

Black Hand

Bosses





Carlo T. Piranio
(1916-1931)


 

 Conventional wisdom attributes the founding of the Dallas family in 1921 and Carlo T. Piranio. Piranio once figured in the theft of $2,500 worth of liberty bonds. He was charged with receiving and concealing stolen property and released on $1,000 bond. The case was later dropped. Carlo Piranio is said to have died of natural causes in 1930 at which time his brother Joseph T. Piranio came to power. In acknowledging the power and prominance of the Piranio many older and long established figures have been cast aside. They have are all listed in the black hand section.



Joseph "J.T." Piranio
(1931-1956)


 Joseph T. Piranio is listed as the second boss of the Dallas family having succeeded his brother Carlo. Joseph "known as J.T.," was long associated with criminal figures having appeared in the Bonanno-Cortal trial as a witness. Piranio owned and operated a cigar store known as J.T. Piranio Company wholesale cigar dealers, in the 20s. Piranio's cigar store sat at 603 South Harwood street near Cadiz. The store burned to the ground destroying most of Piranio's stock valued at $12,000. Not to be discouraged, Piranio rebounded opening a contracting business which developed the Preston Road and Northwest Highway additions.

  Piranio escaped the gaze of the Kefauver hearings and died at his home at the age of 78 in 1956. The Piranio family included two sons Angelo and A.F. in addition to four daughters. Mrs. Charles LaBarba, Mrs. Joseph Lisotta, Mrs. Leon Kent and Mrs. Anthony Vallone. Piranio's son-in-law Anthony Vallone was an ill-fated member of the Houston crime scene. His offspring include famed Houston restaurant operator Tony Vallone. Piranio also had a brother Angelo Castro who lived in Pittsburgh California and associated closely with the Bonanno family. In respect to their departed friend, Joseph Civello, Sam Lobello "of the Tony Lebello clan," Joseph and Ross Musso, Vincent Parrino and Paul Satarino served as Paulbearers.



Frank Ianni
(1956-1958)


  The activities of Big Frank are often confused with those of his son Joe whose career is closely aligned with the activities of Joseph Civello. Big Frank established himself as a powerbroker in both Dallas business and sporting circles shortly after his arrival from Greenwich, Conn. Ianni established a bakery in the '20s which served as a front for his illegal concerns which included bootleg liquor and dope but it was in Texas horse racing circles where he proved himself a true sportsman. A commonality among all major Dallas rackets figures was their involvement in the sport of kings. A successfully move into horse racing required capital, brains and connections. It was the true measure of success, an investment which separated the cream from the milk.

  For Frank it also marked a quiet ascent to the pinnacle of the Dallas underworld. While Benny Binion, Joe Civello and others collected headlines, Big Frank quietly conducted himself with class and dignity. His class and dignity belied a guile which marked his success in the gambling circles. Ianni the horse trainer enjoyed a tremendous amount of success during the 1934 racing season with a 4 year old he named Biff. Biff set track records at Alamo Downs at distances of 1 mile and one-sixteenth, six and one half furlongs and a mile and seventy yards. It was Biff's shocking win in the Fort Worth handicap at Fair Park which bankrupted several Dallas bookmakers. Ianni cleaned up when Biff crossed the finish line ahead of the pack breaking the track record while claiming the $10,000 stake. More important to Ianni's gambling interests was the $28.60 payout on the $2 win ticket.

The stable which produced Biff set threee straight track records at Alamo Downs before taking the Mexico day handicap for 4 year olds also during the 1934 season. Ianni owned horse's performed very well for three seasons ending only when he was indicted along with Joe Civello on drug trafficking charges in January 1937. While Ianni battled the drug charges in court, his stable operation was moved over to New Orleans Louisiana but he would never again play a major role in the sport. At least not as an acknowledged owner.

  As for the relationship between Civello and Ianni, it has been assumed that Civello was of higher rank because he was the featured figure in the narcotics trial. This certainly suited Ianni well as he admitted that he had indeed purchased narcotics but only to supply his horses which had become addicted due to the stable's practice of injecting their horses with dope to improve performance. Unimpressed, the judge sentenced Ianni to a modest 7 year sentence 5 of which were suspended. Civello on the other hand draw a stiff 15 year term which as mentioned serves as the proff most use as an indication of Civello's prominance and power.

  It is alittle known fact that it was Ianni who employed Civello as a horseman, and while Joe cooled his heels in federal prison, Ianni returned to Dallas and consolidated his power base. It never hurts to have money and friends in the right places and Ianni certainly had an abundance of both. He used both to fight off a deportation order which saw him come within days of boarding a Galveston ship bound for his native Italy but battled back desperately to win a Presidential pardon from Harry Truman while his infamous minion completed his prison term. Sighting the service of Ianni's son's war records as well as Frank's long residence within the U.S., as justification in granting his Presidential parond, Dallas immigration inspector W.C. Young soon thereafter announced deportation proceedings would be dropped. This action opened the door for Frank to receive his citizenship without concern for his criminal record or prison conviction hampering his effort.

 Big Frank inherited the Dallas boss title from J.T. Piranio in 1956 but a sudden illness ended his reign in January 1958. Though his reign short, Ianni's influence would continue to dominate the Dallas crime family as men he mentored moved up through the ranks into positions of power and influence. His family connections in both New Orleans and Houston would prove to be of tremendous importance in the decades to come.



Joseph Francis Civello
(1958-1970)


  The Civello era began with the death of Frank Ianni in January 1958. The Paranio, Ianni and Civello families had merged through a series of marriages which in the truest sense created a Dallas family. Crime just so happened to be a sideline business. Nearly a decade older than Joseph Paranio, Phillip Civello a retired grocer contributed two sons to the Dallas crime scene. Joseph Francis and his brother Charles.

 The Civello maintained extensive ties to the Rockford Illinois, Dallas and Louisiana Italian communities a fact demonstrated in the marriages of Mr. Civello's daughters. The extended Civello family in addition to the aforementioned sons, included had five daughters Mrs. Magaret Polito, Mrs. Sam Cangelosi (Baton Rouge, Louisiana), Mrs. A.L. Zacharia and Mrs. Sam Ginestra (Rockford, Illinois) and Mrs. Ross Musso who lived in Dallas.

 The Civello family arrived in the U.S., settling in Baton Rouge Louisiana about 1900. For approximately 23 years, Phillip Civello established himself as a farmer and merchant. In 1923 Mr. Civello and his family relocated to Dallas where they opened a grocery store and built a small fortune selling bootleg liquor. While Mr. Civello clearly had the respect of his neighbors, his sons were feared for their rumored connection to the Italian underworld. Those rumors increased after Joseph Francis was arrested and charged with the murder of Joseph DeCarlo in 1925.

 The two men were said to have been friends and DeCarlo died after a shotgun Civello was handling discharged. DeCarlo though fatally wounded managed to tell investigating officers that the shooting was a tragic mishap. Civello was released after a few days behind bars. His rap sheet later included an arrest and conviction on liquor charges and a drug rap which was dismissed though an associate would be sentenced to prison.

 Civello's stature grew and he was linked to a large scale narcotics ring headed by Louis [Daddy] Ginsberg . In all 9 Civello gang members including his brother Sam, cousins Leon Civello, Joe Cascio as well as the father of his longtime friend and business partner Joe Ianni would received prison sentences. This case is the first known documentation of criminal dealings between Civello and New Orleans criminals.

 Joe Civello served 15 years before emerging from prison to a Dallas operation headed by his father, Joseph T. Paranio, Frank Ianni, the Satarino, Musso and Cortemeglia brothers.

 As mentioned previously family ties played a big role in cementing the Dallas organization.

 As you can see the ties are intimate and seemingly endless. When the Desimone, Dragna, Scozzari and Castro families of California are thrown you get an ideal of the scope of the connections. This is not to mention the fact that New Orleans was drawn even closer with the marriage of one of Carlo Marcello's sisters to the son of a prominent Dallas family member.

 Civello though best known for his attendence at the Appalachin mob meeting and rumors of having played a role in the Kennedy assassination kept a very low profile during the waning years of his life. Civello operated a successful liquor and food import business. He was recognized as a well dressed businessman about town. His explanation of attending the Appalachin meeting at the requet of his cousin Frank Desimone of Los Angeles was viewed as laughable nationally but did little to deminish his newly found national stature but in Dallas business circles.

  Civello would never exibit the type of power many credit him with. Civello spent his last years in relative obscurity dying in January 1970 after a brief illness. Control of the Dallas crime scene then passed briefly to Civello's old friend and trusted aide Joe Ianni before settling in with the colorful and controversial Campisi clan.



Joseph "Joe" Ianni
(1970-1973)
 There is some dispute as to the exact date Joseph Campisi came to rule the Dallas crime nest. Some place him as the direct successor to Joe Civello while others say Frank Ianni a longtime Civello friend with close ties to New Orlenas crime lord Carlos Marcello actually ran things. The FBI and Dallas police department both noted at least three occassions when Ianni and Marcello met in Dallas. FBI surveillance teams spotted the pair in a meeting with a group of Dallas businessmen where the discussion reported featured Dallas gambling at Ianni's Italian Restaurant [2230 Greenville Avenue].

  The location was connected with a major bookmaking operation broken up in January 1972 which was tied to longtime Ianni family Capo Phillip Bosco as well as the infamous Joseph Campisi and gambler Bobby Joe Chapman. Investigators never reached a clear understanding of the true nature of the relationship between Marcello and the Dallas family but speculation ran rampant.

 Again the problem with gaining a clear understanding of the Dallas family has been the failure of those who have attempted to tell the family tale to clearly identify the connections held by each individual involved instead of relying on popular press coverage from the day to determine who held influence and where. The late 60s and early 70s marked a stream of high profile media attention aimed at Marcello so whenever his name came up in relation to criminal activity in the south, the inclination was and was to credit him as the mastermind. This has robbed the Dallas syndicate of its legitimacy as a capable entity unto itself.

  Falling into this category is Joseph Ianni whose father followed J.T. Piranio and mentored Joe Civello in the art of organized criminality. Joseph inherited his father's mantle from Civello upon his death in 1970. Joe and Joe Frank "as Civello was known," were best of friends. When Joe Ianni's sister Evelyn married John Carcelli the son of an associate from Cleveland, Joe Frank served as an usher along with the aforementioned Phil Bosco. He was also given the honor of cutting the wedding cake along with Mrs. Ross Musso. Unfortunately when Joe Ianni married Totsy Marie Pinto, Joe was unavailable to serve as his pals best man due to a prior engagement brought about as a result of his narcotics conviction.

 After Joe Frank had a heart attack in the early '60s, it was Joe Ianni who filled in capably, it was also Ianni who inherited his father's role as syndicate gambling overseer during the 60s on into the early 70s. Acting as Ianni's most trusted aides were Johnny Ross Patrona and Phillip Bosco. Patrona was named in the Bobby Joe Chapman bookmaking case and was known to book bets out of Ianni's Restaurant at Greenville and Belmont. Ianni spent the latter years of his life cloaked in the protective wrapping of a successful restaurant operator. Indeed he was having run Vick's Life a restaurant he purchased from former bootleg king turned restaurant mogul Vick Clesi as well as Vesuvio's Restaurant on Lover's Lane and Ianni's Restaurant (2230 Greenville).

  Ianni's death left the Dallas rackets to Joseph Campisi but the Ianni family lost none of its influence as we shall see.



Joseph "Egyptian Joe" Campisi
(1973-1990)



  Campis busied himself running the Egyptian Restaurant and Lounge as well as financing J.D's Restaurant [6111 Greenville Avenue] an establishment opened by his nephew John Douglas. With all the hype surrounding Campisi for his alledged involvement in the Kennedy assassination and confirmed links to Jack Ruby, the expectations were high for Joe when he took over in 1973. To the disappointment of crime buffs, bookmaking raids were about the extent of the Campisi troubles during the early '70s as he escaped prosecution in a strange case marked by the shooting death of a robber who attempted to rob a Campisi run poker game.

  Thomas Lee Gilbreath was gunned down after brazenly holding up a poker game at the Glen Lakes Country Club by Patrolman L.D. Self. Though Campisi was on scene and undoubtably incharge of the gambling operation no charges were filed against him and he escaped the entire affair unscathed. The incident simply added to the Campisi legend and further lent credibility to his untouchable reputation.

  Campisi maintained his elevated status until his death in 1990. Joe suffered a fatal heart attack after chasing an emloyee out of the Egytian Restaurant whom he witnessed stealing cash from the register. Dallas morned briefly but life in the underworld moved on.



Carlo "Corky" Campisi
(1990-Present)
Carlo "Corky" Campisi is reputedly the last of the mohicans. His sole claim to the underworld title seems to be his last name and status as caretaker of the infamous Egytian Restaurant property. Cousin Corky's legal troubles have consisted of fighting his cousins in court over the use of the family name in connection with their business ventures.

Beyond the continued fight between Campisi family factions which began when his father Sam died and his mother sued his uncle Joe for her share of her husbands holdings, Corky bares little resemblance to the underworld don of old. He didn't seem the least bit bothered by his daughter Amber's appearance in Playboy magazine. Nor did he seem to mind making a fool out of himself on a short lived reality television show but that is probably just the way he would like to keep it.

Underbosses







Joseph T. Piranio
(1916-1931)
J.T. Paranio's career detailed above.



Phillip Civello

(1931-1956)
The Civello name is more identifiable with his famous offspring Joe who rose to lead the Dallas family a couple years after his demise. The elder Civello was very active in the construction business before his retirement several years before his death.



Frank Ianni
(1956)
Big Frank served a very short term as the underboss to a rapidly declining J.T. Piranio following the death of Phil Civello in 1956. With the upper echelon in flux due to age and infirmity, Ianni officially assumed much of the responsibility for running the show as he had done for years anyway.



Charles Vincent "Charlie" Satarino
(1956-1959)
 : Best remembered as the co-owner of the Acme Chair Rental Company, Charlie became a principal figure in Dallas underworld affairs during the mid '50s re-organization serving as the number two man to Joe Civillo. Satarino commanded a crew of capable crime figures which included the likes of Joe and Sam Campisi, Ernest and Sherman La Barba, Charlie Civello and Johnny Ross Patrona. Charlies brief reign was brought to a premature end by an illness which ultimately claimed his life in 1959. Satarino was preceded in death by his father Frank a prominent Dallas businessman.



Ross Musso
(1959-1966)
  Long time Dallas family power figure. Musso enjoyed close ties to many factions within the Dallas underworld. His rise to power capped a criminal career which began during the prohibition era. During the rip roaring twenties, Mr. Musso bootlegged liquor, a vocation which accounted for two of the entries on his rap sheet. On one occasion, Musso and partner Jack Trimble were fined $100 each after pleading guilty before Judge William H. Atwell to a charge of violating the national prohibition act. In another appearance not long after, Musso was accessed a $50 fine in addition to a 125 day jail term. This marked the last time Musso would be forced to suffer the indignity of a jail stay.

  His marriage to the daughter of "Big Phil" Civello a distant cousin, demonstrated the expanse of Musso's contacts. Present as participants in the spectacular ceremony were Mr. and Mrs., Civello, the Patrono, Morales, Scottini, Pinto, Mentessana, Camell, Palermo and Musso families. Musso spent the later part of his life operating the Love Field Grocery store. Musso exercised a tremendous amount of influence in the Dallas family during the Civello years as Joe's extensive legal and health issues robbed him of the ability to actively engage himself in family affairs to any great extent. Thus Musso came to be recognized as Civello's spokesman and chief operating officer. Musso stabilized family affairs relinquishing the role in favor of the lower profile duties of consigliere following the death of Sam Lobello Sr., in 1966. Musso didn't appear to engage in family business after the passing of Joe Civello in 1970. Musso out lived his longtime friend and partner by 5 years.




Joseph "Joe" Ianni
(1966-1970)
  Power is most aptly wielded from the shadows and this is precisely what Joe Ianni managed to do throughout the 1960s. With Joe Civello distracted and disinterested in the trivialities of running a rackets empire, Ianni quietly consolidated a powerful base of loyal aides who seized the diverse Dallas rackets, expanding them into the neighboring states of Oklahoma, Arkansas and Louisiana. As Ianni's underworld influence grew, he sought to insulate himself from outside scrutiny and thus purchased Vick Clesi's popular eatery on Akard "the appropriately named Vick's Life." The move was masterfully executed as Ianni had been listed as an employee of the Clesi establishment for at least three years before acquiring full ownership of the business.

  The two men maintained a close personal friendship which extended far beyond their frequent fishing trips. It was during this period that Ianni greately expanded his restaurant holdings which came to include in addition to Vick's Life on Akard, Ianni's Restaurant 2230 Greenville Avenue at Belmont and Vesuvio's Restaurant on Lovers Lane. He would later install his daughter Marie in a business operated by syndicate soldier John Douglas Campisi (J. D's Restaurant 6111 Greenville).



Phillip S. "Pump" Bosco
(1970-1974)
  The role played by Phillip S. Bosco Jr., has long been over looked. Bosco was one of the few '50s era up and comers to secure a place in the reorganized Dallas family of the 60s and 70s. The successful consolidation of Dallas bookmakers during the early 60s while family boss Joe Civello fought a litany of legal battles was achieved by and large through the organizational talents of Bosco and Joe Ianni. Bosco was one of the largest layoff bookies in the southwest holding a piece of the lucrative operation headed by Bobby Joe Chapman. For his trouble, Bosco was assessed a $927,284.27 federal lien for wailing to pay wagering taxes. At the time of his death in 19974, the debt remain unpaid.



John Douglas"J.D" Campisi
(1974-1990)
  Closely associated with Joe Ianni, Joe Campisi, Phil Bosco and Anthony Caterine during the early 70s, J.D., was on the fast track to mob stardom before the feds got on his tail.



David Campisi
(1990-Present)
Big Frank served a very short term as the underboss to a rapidly declining J.T. Piranio following the death of Phil Civello in 1956. With the upper echelon in flux due to age and infirmity, Ianni officially assumed much of the responsibility for running the show as he had done for years anyway.



Consigliere




Chiro La Barba
(1900s-1925)
  One of the oldest and most respected members of the Italian community upon his death at the age of 78. La Barba's contribution to the Dallas family was primarily ceremonial although his offspring would remain fixtures in the Dallas family for many decades to come.




Michael Angelo Genaro.
(1925-1933)
  One would be hard pressed to find a more important figure associated with the Dallas family than Mr. Genaro. His contribution to the city of Dallas went far beyond his alleged links to the Italian crime syndicate. He founded and served as the President of a development company which built the Scott Hotel. He also served as the President of the Texas Produce Company. A native of Corleone, Mr. Genaro's tremendous business success and influence stretched far beyond the cities of Bryan "where he first made his mark," and Dallas where he lived out the last portion of his life. Mr. Genaro died peacefully at his home at the age of 77.




John Genaro.
(1933-1954)
  Following closely on the heels of his father came the capable John Genaro. John was the sole surving son of the venerable M.A. Genaro. A brother Lawrence died in 1932 at the age of 47. The beloved son inherited the bulk of his father's $50,000 estate, a considerable sum in depression era Texas. John Genaro took full advantage of the assets left to him and added to them several prominent investment firms including Genaro Investments Co., and Hotel Investment Company which owned the Lawrence Hotel in Dallas. In addition to these successful ventures, Genaro served as a director of the First National Bank in Dallas, Dallas Title and Guaranty Company as well as American Savings & Loan Association.

  Genaro also involved himself in a number of civic and charitable organizations one of the most prominent being the Red Cross. The Red Cross was a charity much supported and promoted during its early years by the most prominent banking figure of the era Jesse H. Jones. Jones exercised tremendous influence in the Roosevelt administration a factor which may have been used by Genaro to win the controversial Presidential pardon for Frank Ianni.

  The Genaro family provided important links to west coast rackets figures. These links were established in part by the marraiges of two of Genaro's niece's "Angelina to Joseph Alioto" and Catherine to Rudy Papale. Both were the daughter's of John's brother Lawrence. Rudy Papale would walk the underworld chalk line establishing close ties with feared mob killer Jimmy Fratiano. John Genaro passed away after a heart attack in Dallas.




Salvatore "Sam" Lobello Sr.
(1900s-1966)
  A developer of note accredited with a number of firsts in the Dallas Metropolitan area. It was Lobello who bought and developed land in Preston Center. It was Lobello who constructed one of the first neighborhood shopping centers on Haskell. Again it was Lobello who constructed the Lobello estates and several other well known Dallas sites through the years. Yet it was in the food business where Sam Lobello first made a splash as the originator of the all-night food stand. The Busy Bee Food Stand later gave way to Neiman Marcus on Ervay, but marked the first of many successful food ventures for Lobello.



  On the heels of Busy Bee, Lobello opened Sammy's Restaurant on Greenville and the Lobello Restaurants which later became Lobello's Barbecue on Northwest Highway at Preston Center in Garland. The Lobello restaurant business is best remembered for a long and drawn out fight waged between Mr. Lobello and the War Department. During the early years of Love Field "now Dallas International Airport," pilots began complaining that the lights on a sign at Lobello restaurant on Lemmon Avenue at Love Field was to so bright as to obstruct their vision as they made their approach to the Love Field airstrip. The battle waged for a number of years before the city finally settled the matter claiming the land on which the Lobello Restaurant and the neighboring Flight 21 night club stood.

  Lobello's business acumen and familial ties to Houston were key to the success of the Dallas family. As the son of the well respected Tony Lobello a leading figure in Italian circles during the early 1900s, Sam expanded upon the families stature along with his brother-in-law Sam Camell. Upon his death in 1966 at the age of 82, LoBello was succeeded by Ross Musso.



Ross Musso
(1966-1970)
  Musso made the smooth transition from underboss following the death of the venerable Sam Lobello in 1966. Musso gradually faded into the shadows making way for a younger generation of family leaders to rise. Ross passed quietly in 1975 at the age of 78.




Johnny Ross Patrono
(1970-1973)
  Long before assuming a position of prominence in the administration of Joe Ianni, Johnny Ross Patrono was a familiar name to family watchers. As the son of Ralph Patrono a well connected operator of a wholesale meat market, Johnny Ross was well schooled in the subtleties of family life. As a close associate of Joe Ianni working the underground gambling scene, Patrono worked closely with Phil (Pump) Bosco during the consolidation of Dallas bookmaking operations under Ianni. This massive undertaking was achieved with relative ease, one of the few moments of tension coming when Patrono's Sportman's Club (2716 McKinney) was leveled in an early morning explosion.

  The explosion reportedly came 24 short hours after gunmen pumped three shots through the front door. It was never determined who or why the explosion took place but investigators thought the blast somewhat suspicious. Judging from the rapid rate Patrono advanced through the ranks following these incidents, it is doubtful that anyone would be so bold as to move against such a highly placed figure with the sanction of higher ranking members of the Dallas family.

  Patrono's bookmaking activities were later brought to light as authorities interrupted a multi-million dollar operation belonging to Bosco, headed by Billy Joe Chapman. Informants revealed that Patrono often accepted bets at Ianni's Italian Restaurant on Greenville where he was employed as a greeter. Patrono never faced any prosecution as a result of those allegations and he quietly faded from view as the Ianni era drew to a close.

Capiregime (Captains)




Anthony "Tony" Zoppi
(1960s-1980s)
 : One of the most visible figures connected to the Dallas underworld through an association with the Campisi boys, Zoppi is also a probable Kennedy assassination conspirator. Tony Zoppi was one of the key connections between the Dallas syndicate and the world of show business. Prior to landing a plum job at the Riviera Hotel in Las Vegas where he associated with the likes of Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Bob Hope, Zoppi worked first as a press aide to Lyndon Johnson during his 1948 run for the Senate and later as a writer for the Dallas morning news. Zoppi was a man who "like his childhood friend Sinatra," stayed loyal to his friends, regardless of the reputation they may have carried in polite society.

 : He admitted to maintaining an extremely close friendship with infamous Dallas club owner Jack Ruby. When questioned about their relationship years after Ruby's death, Zoppi replied "I think I knew him better than anyone else in Dallas. He went on to say that Ruby "was in my office the morning of the Kennedy assassination. The link was confirmed by an Associated Press reporter who asked Ruby during an interview "Do you know Tony pretty well?" to which Ruby replied "Know him?" "Why I'm giving him the rights to my story!" And true to his word, Ruby did indeed sign the rights to his life story over to Ruby. Zoppi pushed forward with the project going so far as to have a screen play written out which he sent to MGM.

 : Further adding to the mystery and controversy surrounding Zoppi's role in the death of President Kennedy, he often claimed to have been the first newsman to report the death of President Kennedy. As the story went as told by Zoppi, he watched the Kennedy parade from the Adolphus Hotel with an unnamed FBI agent. After the President was shot, Zoppi was assigned to go over to Parkland Memorial hospital but claims to have left his press pass and was therefore unable to get into the hospital. Managing to manuver his way to a receiving dock at the rear of the hospital, Zoppi said he witnessed an ambulance pull up and remove a casket which he instantly knew to be for the President. After putting in a call to Dallas News city editor John King, Zoppi relayed the message that the President had died of his wounds before anyone else had an oppotunity to report the grime historical detail.

 : Before leaving Dallas for the fun of the Las Vegas desert, Zoppi scooped the country again when his good pal Ruby called him from jail after shooting Lee Harvey Oswald, a conversation which Zoppi said lasted at least an hour and a half. The emotionally spent assassin broke down "three or four times," during his conversation with Zoppi.

 : Zoppi left Dallas not long after the Kennedy assassination and secured a job at the Riviera Hotel working as the publicity director. Zoppi survived a change in management and continud on in his role under Eddie Torres who also was an owner-operator of the Fremont and Aladdin Casino operations. Zoppi's contacts extended into the world of sports where he sparked up friendships with two figures who would become infamous in their own rights, O. J. Simpson and former Detroit Tigers ace, Denny McClain. Zoppi remained a fixture at the Riviera rising to the rank of vice-president for entertainment under Israeli businessman Meshulam Riklis. Zoppi remained at the Riviera until 1982 when he returned to Dallas.

Soldiers




Samuel Lobello Jr.
(1950s-1970s)
  The only son of the famed Dallas developer of the same name. Sam Jr., was active in the running of the families restaurants which included Sammy's Retaurant on Greenville and Lobello's Restaurants later Lobello's Barbecue on Northwest Highway at Preston in Garland Texas. It was at the Northwest Highway location that young Sam opened the highly successful Diana Room.



Nick Cascio.
(1950s-1970s)
  Notorious Dallas underworld figure best known as a safecracker during the 1950s. Cascio was also suspected of being a hired gun and high level dope trafficker. Cascio's name emerged in connection with the California murder of Mrs. Mary D. McCully. Authorities perked up when they learned that McCully was in fact the former Dorothy "Dottie" Ferrrantello, the wife of murdered Dallas bookie "Chicken Louie" Ferrantello. Cascio and Jettie Bass were both brought in and queried in the case after police discovered connections between Mrs. McCully and a safe cracking operation. It was also surmised that Cascio and Bass may have been in California at the time of Mrs. McCully's death. The investigation ended but not without some interesting bits of information coming forward such as the registration of McCully's 1956 auto was in the name of Mrs. J. Bass of Texas.

  Despite the mounting evidence of a conspiracy, Cascio and Bass were both allowed to skip free after California sportsman Walter Borcher admitted shooting McCulley as the pair sat in his car. Cascio's name was later mentioned in connection with the murder of "Little Augie" Pisano and Janice Drake in 1959, charges on which he managed to free himself by submitting to a lie detector test. He was also linked with the notorious bookmaker James Henry Dolan, a figure in the murder of John F. Kennedy. Dolan, a bookmaking partner of Bobby Joe Chapman and Johnny Ross Patrono. It was determined that Dolan was employed for a time at a car lot owned by Cascio in the late 60s.

Associates




Frank Satarino
(1956-1959)
  Actively engaged in the grocery, produce and liquor businesses until 1956, Satarino maintained close personal and business ties to the Piranio, Civello, La Barba and Trizza families. Prior to establishing his Dallas residency, Satarino lived in in Kansas City and New Orleans, two cities with intimate ties to the Dallas family. Frank Satarino died in 1959 after a long illness. He was survived by his wife, a daughter "Mrs. Carl Cirone" and six sons Charles, John "of Detroit," Samuel, Peter, Paul and Joseph.

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