Colombo, Joseph Anthony, Sr.
- Stacey Hamilton
Colombo, Joseph Anthony, Sr. (16 June 1923–22 May 1978), organized crime boss, was born in Brooklyn, New York, the son of Anthony Colombo, who was also connected with organized crime and was garroted while Joseph was still a teenager. His mother’s name is unknown. When asked if he ever sought vengeance for his father’s murder, Joseph Colombo replied, “Don’t they pay policemen for that?” After attending New Utrecht High School, he entered the Coast Guard, from which he was given a medical discharge in 1945 (he allegedly suffered from some sort of “psychoneurosis”). Colombo thereafter balanced a life of crime with legitimate jobs. He began working as a longshoreman soon after leaving the service, while also gaining experience as a small-time criminal, principally involving himself in modest gambling operations. For six years he was a salesman for a Mafia-controlled meat company. Then Colombo became a real estate agent in Bensonhurst, where he continued to work for a $20,000 annual salary throughout his career as an organized crime boss....