Re-Examining Whitey Bulger: The Learning Years: The False Stories. Part Eleven

A Cape Cod

Yesterday I set out how I saw the meeting between Howie  and Whitey coming about.  It takes place in late Fall 1972. The two parties to the meeting at Chandler’s are the Killeens (Whitey) and the Mullens (Pat Nee and Tommy King). The mediator (Howie Winter).  Chandler’s being a Martorano place I’m sure Murderman was lurking about somewhere as was his brother Jimmy.

Murderman Martorano in his book gives us his version of how the meeting came about. It is all wrong and self-serving. He dates it back to the spring of 1972 which would have been before the murder of Donnie Killeen which date he has to use so that his story fits his telling. He has Kenny Killeen retiring in 1971 a year earlier than he actually did. He has him retiring because of Billy O’Sullivan’s murder.

Kenny Killeen didn’t get out of the business because of O’Sullivan’s murder. It was only after his brother Donnie was murdered and a shotgun blast was fired at him in the fall of 1972. The only one who thought of changing course after that murder was Whitey who put feelers out to FBI Agent Dennis Condon trying to figure out if he could get protection. When he saw he couldn’t he indicated to Condon that he and Donnie were going to have to become more aggressive, which he did returning fire against the Mullen gang.

Here’s how Murderman tells that he first met Whitey. He was sitting at a table in a rundown bar called Duffy’s Tavern on Columbus Avenue right next to where Chandler’s restaurant would be located when this well dressed guy in his early forties approached him. Whitey introduced himself as a friend of Billy O’Sullivan. He was asked to sit down. Whitey wanted him to set up a meeting between him and Howie. Whitey told him “I have to get this thing in the Town resolved.” Murderman said that the guys from Southie referred to Southie as, “the Town”. That was news to me. I always thought of the CharlesTOWN guys as the Townies.

Murderman said that Whitey went to Howie Winter with a plan to betray Donnie Killeen. After that he held the meeting at Chandler’s with the Mullens where he told them about his plan. Then he went out and killed  Donnie.

It makes no sense. You don’t go to gangsters you don’t know and tell them you’re going to whack your boss. You never know who is connected to whom. Whitey may be vicious but he isn’t dumb. If he planned to kill Donnie he would have just gone off and done it. He didn’t need anyone’s help.

Whitey wouldn’t have had a peace sit-down with the Mullens while both Donnie and Kenny Killeen were still alive and in business and tell these other Southie guys he was going to kill Donnie and expect the word wouldn’t get back. That’s not how these things are done. That’s why Murderman has Kenny out of the business at that time even though he wasn’t.

Common sense and gangster ethics dictate that the meeting took place as Pat Nee described in the late fall after Whitey was left in charge of the Killeens. Murderman without realizing it contradicts his own story.  He confirms Pat Nee’s statement that Whitey reached out to J.R. (Joe) Russo, one of the few Mafia guys he knew, to set up the Chandler meeting. Whitey would not have needed to do this if he had already arranged it with Howie Winter.

Murderman has the dates and facts wrong  because he has to fit them into one of Howie Carr’s many fanciful scenarios in the book he wrote in 2006 where Whitey is blamed for everything including the killing of Donald Killeen. Howie has Whitey connecting up with Winter Hill as early as the summer of 1971 and killing Donnie as part of a plan he pitched to Howie Winter. He also has Kenny Killeen quitting the rackets a day or two after Donnie’s killing after Whitey pulls  up in a car telling him he’s out of business.

Of course, Howie is copying the chain of events imagined by the authors of Black Mass. None of the authors seemed to know about the shotgun blast at Kenny that fall when he was on his porch on Marine road so they simply made up something to pass on. In his recent book retired Massachusetts State Police Colonel Foley also follows along by having Bulger killing Donnie Killeen. Then, as we see, it gets picked up by the old gangsters like Martorano trying to recreate events that happened forty years ago.

All made up out of whole cloth.  It’s how legends develop without any basis in facts. Wrong information gets repeated over and over again as if by repetition a lie will become the truth. That’s why I’m doing this reexamination to see if I can ferret out the truth.

A View of Boston
From South Boston

Pat Nee is also right when he says Howie had no idea who Whitey was prior to Chandler meeting. Murderman also said: “I hadn’t really been following what was going on over there in Southie, none of us had.” According to Nee aside from Howie, Gerry Angiulo knew nothing about Whitey. It’s fair to say neither did Murderman until late in the fall of 1972 when the Chandler sit-down took place.

As 1973 dawned, Whitey was not a player to be reckoned with. He didn’t have the power to run the Southie operations. He had to make peace with the Mullens to stay alive. He had to get protection from Somerville to keep him alive. He had not murdered anyone.