Howie Winter Is On His Way: Give My Regards To Whitey:

Give my regards to Whitey (left) is the best I can come up with at this point when I think that Howie Winter’s funeral is today. Hopefully he will look him up.  Obviously their similar careers will put them in the same place. I initially thought this time Whitey can do Howie a favor and protect him.

It was back in 1972 that Whitey decided his life was not worth a  plug nickel (defined as:  . . .  originally a one-cent coin and later a three-cent coin where the “plug” (center disc) has been removed, thus decreasing the metal value of the coin”) when he sought the help of Howie Winter. He had been in a skirmish with a bunch of younger guys, called the Mullens, and needed help. Howie, knowing the Mullens as fellow thieves, arranged a peace. Whitey for his protection joined with Howie Winter.

Whitey has been where he is since October 30, 2018. I thought by now he has made some cozy and warm relationships. He may be able to show Howie the ropes and protect him. After all neither one betrayed each other in the past. Then I realized Howie would have better friends to look up.

Howie (left)  most likely would hook up with the Somerville guys: Sal Sperlinga, Joe McDonald, and Jimmy Sims so that they can have a real hot time. It’s hard to think that Sal has been gone since 1978 and Joe since 1997. As for Jimmy, I wonder if he and Joe are getting along. If I had to guess Joe got rid of him during one of his benders but that’s only a guess because Jimmy just disappeared. No one knew what happened to him but he was last seen in Joe’s company.

Whitey was not a Somerville guy. Joe never liked Whitey that much. He was not part of the original gang.  Joe was 12 years older and set in his ways. He thought Whitey was a lot of bull, you know what I mean. I get the idea that Jimmy Sims and Sal Sperlinga felt the same way about him being Somerville guys. So perhaps Howie will just have a few moments to pass on my regards to Whitey and then will go off with the others to talk about the old days in Somerville.

What about Buddy? Wow, I almost forgot about him probably since he’s been gone since 1965. He and Whitey never knew each other so they probably have not hooked up. Buddy was one of the real tough guys who Howie admired. I mean really tough with his fists. Around Labor Day 1961 he beat a guy badly who complained about him dating his wife, he beat up a 65 year old guy in a cafeteria probably because the coffee was not hot enough, then he beat up George McLaughlin who was mouthing off at some Somerville girls sending him to the hospital for a couple of weeks. Not only that, he beat the same federal charge three times. He was a real deal Somerville guy.

Howie got there before some of the other guys he knew. 79-year-old John Martorano and 86-year-old Steve Flemmi are still above the grass. I am sure Howie would have predicted that 87-year-old Frank Salemme would have been there long before him. Back in 2002 at the John Connolly trial he looked like he was on his last legs. Martorano, Flemmi and Salemme turned on Whitey so they cannot pass anything on. None of the guys from Southie want to see him.

It looks like Howie will quickly get involved with the Somerville guys. That’s why I am asking him to take a minute to give my regards to Whitey an Old Harbor Village guy. As to what he should say, tell him the Boston media and other folk still believe the con that he was a major criminal. Whitey would like that.



13 thoughts on “Howie Winter Is On His Way: Give My Regards To Whitey:

  1. What was Buddy’s last name? I was at The New Jumbo Lounge with a bad boy and he pointed to a guy and said, “That guy is the toughest fist fighter in all of Boston.” Was Buddy a Somerville man?

    1. Buddy McLean was the Somerville guy back on those days. Howie Winter told how he heard George McLaughlin hit another Sonerville guy with a beer bottle so Buddy went and gave him a thrashing. He also killed Bernie McLaughlin in broad daylight in front of several witnesses and everyone was either looking in their pocket book or trying their shoe laces when it happened and as they all said “I didn’t see nothing.”

      1. Thanks, Matt. It was not Buddy I saw because it was probably 1978 or so and Buddy died before that. His pictures remind us that you don’t have to look like a monster to be good with your fists.

  2. First a nod to John Connolly and a wish for his freedom. Moving on to the gangster scene, it remains appalling that the Bureau of Prisons can’t solve the murder of an 89-year-old inmate confined to a wheelchair. And here’s a shout out to Catherine Greig, a stand up gal who refused to talk. Glad she’s out and hope she finds happiness. Howie is on a downward spiral to the real underworld, but who knows, if the ayatollah is right and the U.S. is the Great Satan, maybe Howie will just wind up back in Somerville. We’ll see ….

    1. I don’t think any of the old team would recognize Somerville. There’s some sort of church at the site of the garage they hung out. Even Satan may not recognize it.
      Catherine Greig deserves a statue in Southie. Of all the guys in Southie it turned out that the only one who wasn’t a rat is a gal.
      Poor John Connolly will never get out on his own two feet as long as the GOP holds the governor’s seat in Florida Always thought he had a federal remedy.
      As for Whitey, the Globe solved his murder right after it happened naming his killers. Did it not pass the information on to the Bureau of Prisons?

  3. thanks for your article on this blog.

    1. in your opinion did Howie know Connolly and Rico?

    2. do you think that Larry Baione and Jerry Angiulo would want to exchange words with Howie wherever they are?

    3 what is your understanding of the Timmons murder?

    1. David:

      1. Howie would have known Rico as an FBI guy who showed up with another FBI guy Dennis Condon (five years older than Howie from Charlestown) as a special agent who showed up at some of the gangster night spots. dI doubt that he knew much about Connolly. If Martorano’s story is to be believed that Whitey told them he was getting information from Connolly then he would have at least known his name. His conviction in the state extortion case and the Race Fixing case indicates he had no real relationship with either of them.

      2. I suppose they knew each other – didn’t Jerry and Larry both say the guys at Winter Hill were there guys. Jerry split 50,000 with Howie for killing Indian Al and his gang. They would like to sit around with a glass of wine telling about the old days no doubt. I suppose they would at least like to know how much they stole from the NY Mafia guys when they murdered Richard Castucci.

      3. Timmons’ body was never found. He had done time in Shirley and Walpole. In one of his early heists he stole a safe from a building but it fell out of the trunk of his car as he was taking it away. Here’s what I wrote in my book about it: “Steve Flemmi in making a deal with the FBI to save himself from being sentenced to death said that Timmons had kidnapped Abe Sarkis the big Boston mob associate. Larry Baione was upset at this. He asked Salemme and a couple of others to settle it for him. They met Timmons at a bar at the corner of Hyde Park Avenue and River Street. There he was beaten up, then taken to the Sharon home of Salemme, and there he was strangled by Red Assad with assistance from Steve Flemmi, Frank Salemme, and Larry Baione.”

  4. None of these guys sins will be forgiven. They were murders and they all will suffer much much longer then they lived. They speak so highly of themselves, they were criminals. Tu4n the flame nice and high fir them the future residents of hell.

    1. Daniel:

      Howie had the reputation but he wasn’t as bad as some of the others. John Martorano and Steve Flemmi clearly were head and shoulders above the others. But I agree, if you deliberately take someone’s life there must be some sort of serious consequences for doing it.

  5. Nice post, Matt.

    I find myself wondering about the environment where these guys are–
    Hot as h…? Of course.
    Dry heat? Maybe.
    Packing heat? Of course not!

    But the environment in a broader sense–social, legal, judicial–well, who can say?

    It may be time for me to read Dante’s Inferno.

    1. GOK:

      Thanks! When you read Dante try to figure out at what level these guys are all gathered. John Maartorano – still hanging around – tells us he’s a good man after having murdered at least 20 people – he says a priest has forgiven him – wonder what the Big Boss thinks of that?

  6. I have read that Joe McDonald was respected because of his service to our country in World War 2. Joe McDonald does not come up that often in accounts by national and local media in Boston in regards to events pertaining to the Jimmy Bulger era. Perhaps you will write about him at some point with more detail. I think readers would find his old fashioned quiet stand up guy persona a refreshing change from the informant infested later days of Winter Hill.

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