What Vs. Why

Leo Dodd drawing of my accident with Sammy G" Gingello in Webster, New York

I am not particularly interested in the why. I am more interested in the what.

But we have been developing a back story from fuzzy old negatives as to why I am interested in the mugshot. The better to serve the public.

I traced a certain fascination to 1970 when my brother was arrested in Ohio for pot. It was an incredibly minor infraction in my book but he was looking at ten years in maximum security. His arrest had huge impact on our family. My brother was in town a few weeks ago and shared a few of the letters my father wrote to him while he was in prison.

I was back home for the summer, staying with my parents in Webster, and I headed out somewhere in their black VW bug. I had my dog, Molly, in the back seat and I was only a few blocks from our home when I spotted Brad walking up to my house. He had probably hitchhiked over, we hitchhiked everywhere in those days. I swung the passenger door open for Brad to get in while trying to keep Molly from jumping out and then turned left right in front of a fancy red car. My dad illustrates all this in the enlargement of his drawing above.

But he left out one interesting detail. The red car that I hit, the guy I pulled directly in front of, was the infamous Salvatore “Sammy G” Gingello, a local mobster, and he wasn’t as pissed off as I would have expected anyone to be. He was just grumbling about how he was on his way somewhere and this was gonna set him back. I read a pretty interesting book about the Rochester mob written by Georgia Durante, Sammy’s girlfriend. Sammy was killed in 1978 when a bomb was detonated as he entered his car, which was parked outside of the Blue Gardenia restaurant in Irondeqouit.

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2 Responses to “What Vs. Why”

  1. Martin Edic Says:

    Jeez Paul, I never heard this story. You hit Sammy G? Yikes!

  2. andrea stim Says:

    thank u for posting the letter. such a father u had. wow. it’s no wonder u r a beautiful person.

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andrea stim