DEAD: ON THIS DATE
John Gotti (aged 61)
American crime boss
John Joseph Gotti Jr. (October 27, 1940 – June 10, 2002) was an Italian-American gangster who became boss of the Gambino crime family in New York City. Gotti and his brothers grew up in poverty and turned to a life of crime at an early age. Gotti quickly rose to prominence, becoming one of the crime family’s biggest earners and a protégé of Gambino family underboss Aniello Dellacroce, operating out of the Ozone Park neighborhood of Queens.
DEATH: Gotti’s condition rapidly declined and he died on June 10, 2002, at the age of 61. The Roman Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn announced that Gotti’s family would not be permitted to have a Requiem Mass, but allowed a memorial Mass after the burial.
Gotti’s funeral was held in a non-church facility. After the funeral, an estimated 300 onlookers followed the procession, which passed Gotti’s Bergin Hunt and Fish Club, to the gravesite. Gotti’s body was interred in a crypt next to his son, Frank, who was struck and killed by a car when he was twelve years old in 1980. Gotti’s brother, Peter, was unable to attend owing to his incarceration. In an apparent repudiation of Gotti’s leadership and legacy, the other New York City families sent no representatives to the funeral. By the turn of the century, due in large part to numerous prosecutions brought on as a result of Gotti’s tactics, half of the family’s soldiers were in prison.