Albert AnastasiaAlbert liked to kill. And if he got paid? Well, mores the better. He killed all over the place. In 1903, this little satan spawn was born Umberto Anastasio in Italy. He and nine of his brothers shipped themselves to the US 19th class (that means they were hidden in barrels on a ship where they had to suck any dick that came through the bunghole.)
As soon as Albert hit the shore, he became a thug. He quickly got jobs breaking legs, smacking up whores, and rubbing people out. Somewhere in there, he decided to change the last letter of his last name so his folks wouldn't be embarassed. They must have been proud. Of course, they probably never knew he was in a Brooklyn gang that raped any girls that came sauntering through their territory. At the age of 14, Albert was already a giant beefy bastard, willing and able to snap arm and leg bones with his bare hands.
As prohibition began, Albert started working for Joe Adonis, helping keep shippments of booze safe from wandering bands of goons. With the money he earned, he began paying his own band of neck stompers, building an influential gang of Jewish bad asses.
Anastasia himself wasn't Jewish, but he had a particular love for Judeism that surfaced constantly throughout his career. After he helped kill Joe Masseria alongside Vito Genovese, Joe Adonis, and Hebrew Bugsy Siegel, Albert became the boss of a new kind of business. (Broken link for Murder Inc) was the disposal end of Lucky Luciano's National Crime Syndicate. As chief of Murder Inc, Albert had three dozen accomplished killers, most of them Jewish, ready to strike out at anyone the mafia wanted to get rid of. All he needed was a phone call and he would send along some boys to take care of the problem.
Being the boss of Murder Inc. did not keep Albert's hands clean. He was a sloppy mad man who helped kill anyone he felt needed special attention. When Dutch Schultz demanded Thomas Dewey be killed in order to preserve his slot machine empire, Anastasia was the guy who wanted to do it. He borrowed a toddler from a neighbor and sat outside Dewey's apartment on Fifth Avenue. After three days of watching the district attorney, Anastasia concluded that killing him would be quite easy.
But the affair ended with the Dutchman at the other end of a Murder Inc. gun, and Dewey square in line for promotions all the way to a failed run for president. The National Crime Syndicate had decided the heat from killing Dewey would be too dangerous, and instead opted to off Schultz, who no one liked anyway.
1942 brought change to the New York rackets, and the to the Syndicate in general. Abe "Kid Twist" Reles began to testify against members of Murder Inc. at the start of that year, sending most lowlifes scurrying for cover. One incident which he related to authorities was a murder Anastasia had committed in 1939. Anastasia personally garotted Peter Panto, a longshoreman intent upon pushing the mob out of the Brooklyn docks. Anastasia killed Panto not only to protect mob interests, but also to help out his brother Anthony, who ran the Longshoreman's union.
Before Reles could testify in front of a judge, however, he fell from his sixth floor suite at the hotel where the police were holding him. Anastasia was safe, but not out of the public eye.
To keep the heat off, Anastasia signed up to help fight Hitler. He enlisted in the US army and ensured himself American citizenship by rising to the rank of Sergant. He was stationed in Georgia, and thanks to heavy bribes in his favor, never saw a day of combat. He never even left the US. But that didn't stop him from marching through Brooklyn wearing medal's he'd bought and stolen while in the infantry. Anastasia regailed his fellow mobsters with war stories for years after the war ended. He was a pretty good liar, evidently, because no one ever found out the truth.
Albert became a big wig in New York when Joe Adonis' power began to subside. From 1946 on, Anastasia ruled one of the five families that controlled New York, though the name of that family would change after his death to reflect his usurpers.
With power came psychosis. Anastasia's friends began refering to him as the Mad Hatter. He was prone to fits of rage and would order hits on people simply because he was having a bad day. Once, while watching TV, Anastasia saw a news report about Arnold Schuster. Schuster had called the police to inform them that he had seen infamous bank robber Willie Sutton getting off a New York subway. Anastasia was furious. "I can't stand squeelers," he screamed at the TV, "Hit that guy!" And so, on March 8, 1952, that guy got hit. Anastasia had never even met Willie Sutton, but Arnold Schuster's loose lips had gotten him on Albert's bad side. That was enough to warrent murder.
Unfortunately for Anastasia, he wasn't a truly evil bastard. He was a cold hearted killer, an unabashed criminal, and a major mafia boss, but there were others still who plotted for his downfall with more venom and sociopathic motives than even the Mad Hatter could have expected. Vito Genovese, one of the all-time biggest cock suckers in history, was covetous of Anastasia's empire.
Genovese sent Vincent "The Chin" Gigante to New York one day with a loaded .45 in his pocket. The Chin was a big lumox of a man and was barely capable of proper human speech. Genovese instructed The Chin to shoot Frank Costello, one of the five crime family bosses. Anastasia and Costello were friends, and frequently worked together. Gigante fucked up and winged Costello with his bullet, leaving the mob boss scared and confused. Genovese began circulating rumors that Anastasia had ordered the hit.
Anastasia was a regular family man. He was home to his wife every night by nine, and spent lots of time with his children. On October 25, Anastasia awakened early and headed to the city for his day's work. He kissed his wife and hopped in his car. His body-guard/chaufer had called in sick and Albert had to drive himself.
By 10:25 AM, Albert was in the basement of the Park Sheraton hotel in Manhattan, sitting in a barber's chair waiting for a shave and a haircut. It cost a bit more than two bits. As Anastasia laid back and closed his eyes for a snooze, two gunmen walked in. The older of them, Carlo Gambino raised his gun and shot Anastasia three times. Anastasia, stood up and began to charge his assailants. This only resulted in him losing most of his hands and arms to bullets. After 10 shots, Anastasia was dead. The killers disposed of their weapons in the gutters of New York, and Vito Genovese took his position as head of the crime family that would eventually become known as the Gambino family.