Saturday Reading Time: The Introduction to The Great Whitey Myth

I’m moving on through my book about Whitey. I’ve been fooling around with the introduction to it. It runs about 2,000 words so those who have the time might want to read it. If you have any comments, corrections, or additions let me know.

Introduction to The Great Whitey Myth

Roger Wheeler left his country club in Tulsa, Oklahoma, on May 27, 1981, having completed a friendly round of golf. He walked toward his automobile parked in the lot. Another car parked in the lot contained two men, John Martorano and Joseph McDonald. Both me were fugitives from justice hiding out in Florida. They had flown into Tulsa a couple of days earlier.

They were there to murder Wheeler. They had been paid fifty thousand dollars by John Callahan to kill him. Callahan had been the former president of a business owned by Wheeler. He and Martorano were friends. Callahan knew of Martorano’s reputation as a stone killer. Callahan told Martorano he had been trying to buy the business from Wheeler but they couldn’t come to terms. Putting Wheeler out of the way would enable him to buy the business from Wheeler’s widow.

Wheeler opened the door to his car without noticing Martorano was closing in on him. He climbed inside. He was about to close the door when Martorano grabbed it with his left hand. In his right hand he held a pistol. He fired the bullets into Wheeler’s head, crossed back to where McDonald was waiting, and drove away.

This would be the nineteenth murder that Martorano would admit to committing. Several of his victims were done in because he feared they were cooperating with the police. He would admit to one more murder after Wheeler. That came about when he heard that the police had turned their suspicions onto Callahan. They were planning to inquire of him about his relationship to Roger Wheeler’s murder.

He knew if Callahan didn’t stand up to the pressure there was only one person who Callahan could implicate. That would be him. He invited Callahan to Florida. When he arrived Martorano and McDonald were at the airport to meet him. Callahan climbed into the passenger seat of the automobile McDonald was driving. We’ll never know if he noticed how the floor and seat was covered with plastic. If he did, he had no time to react. As soon as he got in Martorano came up behind him and shot him in the back of the head.

Martorano would eventually be caught up in a federal racketeering charge in the Boston federal court. He was apprehended in 1995 after sixteen years on the run from a charge in a race fixing case. He faced serious prison time. He had done three months in jail on gaming charges earlier in his career in a case that had been compromised by a state trooper who he was paying off.  He didn’t like being confined. There was one thing he could do to lesson this. He could cooperate and offer to testify against others.

The racketeering charge against Martorano included other people in the conspiracy with him. One was James “Whitey” Bulger who was not in custody but had gone on the lam when he heard the charges were coming down. Another was Steven Flemmi who like Martorano was in custody. He too was facing serious prison time.

Whitey and Steve Flemmi were partners. They also were top echelon informants for the FBI; Flemmi from the mid-Sixties and Whitey from the mid-Seventies. Of the two, Flemmi was the most feared. He had the reputation. In cross-examination during a trial in 2018 he would say that he murdered around fifty people. It is likely the number was probably similar to that of Martorano around twenty or so. Flemmi had made a deal with the federal prosecutors to testify so he was free to claim any number of murders knowing there would be no consequences to him for doing so.

The FBI had been plenty helpful to Flemmi. Back in the late sixties he placed a bomb in a lawyer’s automobile which went off along with the lawyer’s leg and he murdered one of his fellow hoodlums Bill Bennett. He was indicted for both of those matters. He fled. He was living in Montreal when the FBI arranged for those charges against him to be dismissed. He came back to Boston in 1974, they were dismissed, he was a free man again in the employ of the FBI.

Flemmi had been part of the reign of Boston gangster murders in which gangsters took the lives of over 100 people. It took place over a twenty year period from 1956 to 1976 with most occurring in the middle of the Sixties. Whitey missed most of them. He was doing nine years of a twenty-year federal sentence for bank robbery from 1956 to 1964. When he got out he tried to go straight for a few years. As the decade of the Sixties was coming to an end he had drifted back into the rackets in a small section of Boston called South Boston, or Southie.

Martorano was looking to make a deal for himself after he was incarcerated. He knew that other people were thinking of the same thing. These were guys who couldn’t do the time for their crimes despite all their bravado when they had a gun in their hands.  He’d learn that the main target of the federal prosecutors was the guy who was not in custody, Whitey Bulger. If he could implicate Whitey into some of his crimes, then he could get himself a sweet deal.

To do that though, he would have to admit to all his murders that he believed others could implicate him in. As to those no one knew about, he’d keep them to himself. No use overburdening the prosecutors with too many of them. He knew he was in a race against the others who might cooperate like Flemmi who ended up cooperating. He did get the sweetheart deal he wanted. He got 12 years in prison for the twenty murders. 

The deal was so outrageous Martorano said to lessen the stench of it the prosecutors said part of his deal was to cooperate and give evidence against other named people. Martorano did not know anything about them. He knew the prosecutors were lying to cover for him so he went along. To top it off on his release from prison the federal prosecutors gave him twenty thousand dollars start-up money, one grand for each admitted murder.

Flemmi also got a great deal. Although he was sentenced to prison for life, he never went to the Bureau of Prisons. The prosecutors were so enamored of him that they arranged for him to keep most of his ill begotten assets and be confined, if he was confined, at places known only to them.

It was clear the Martorano and Flemmi were criminals of a much higher degree than Whitey. They began their murders earlier in their lives in their twenties and continued with them for years racking up at least twenty each. Whitey didn’t commit his first murder until he was in his fifties. Having made astounding deals with Martorano and Flemmi to get Whitey the prosecutors ended up piling the murder charges on him. He was charged with nineteen murders, the majority of which were committed by Martorano who added Whitey into the mix.

He went to trial. He hardly defended against the individual murders positing the idea that the federal prosecutors had given him immunity for all of them. That didn’t carry the day. He was convicted of 11 of the murders.  

Two of the eleven were those of Roger Wheeler and John Callahan. Martorano testified Whitey had a hand in them by agreeing to let him do them as if he was somehow under Whitey’s control or they were working together. Of the others, Paul McGonagle was shot by Tommy King; Tommy King and Richard Castucci were murdered by Martorano.

 Of the remaining six, Brian Halloran, Michael Donohue, and Eddie Connors there is little doubt Whitey did them with the help of others. In each they used a combat-type weapon firing at them from a distance. They did not have to get close to them as if playing a video game.

One, a woman, Deborah Hussey, the step-daughter of Flemmi was put on Whitey by Flemmi even though he had no motive to murder her while Flemmi did fearing she was going to disclose his sexual abuse of her when she was a child in his house. John McIntyre and Arthur “Bucky” Barrett were murdered in the same house as Hussey which was owned by the brother of Pat Nee who was involved in the Halloran and Donohue murders. Barrett was being extorted; McIntyre was another one where Whitey had no motive but others with him, like Nee, had plenty of reason to kill him.

There are strange things about all of Whitey’s murders. He is alleged to have had a hand in the actual murder of six of them. These six were all committed in South Boston or a mile or two away. A murder weapon is put in his hand in only five of the murders. He is never alleged to have done one on his own but it is always in the company of others. After the murders in the Nee house, Kevin Weeks his young strong-arm associated who pleaded guilty to five murder and received only six years, said Whitey would not participate in the desecration of the body. Flemmi would do the gross work of pulling out teeth and other acts that brutalized the deceased. Whitey would go up to rest apparently because the murders made him ill.

In the hierarchy of murders it is difficult to decide between Steven Flemmi and John Martorano as to who was the worst of the lot. I go with Flemmi because he murdered his girlfriend and step-daughter although Martorano murdered two teenage African-Americans. After them, in the Boston scene there are others who rank up near them: Howie Winter who used to be the boss of Martorano, Flemmi and Whitey; Frank Salemme who was involved with the Mafia; other Mafia guys like Larry Baione or Joe Russo known as hit men, Joe McDonald who did the hits with Martorano and killed witnesses against him. The field was crowded with the real evil guys and the lesser evil Whitey-type guys who murdered around a half-dozen people.

It seems strange delineating among murderers. Some are monstrous. All are evil. All are a bane on our society. I only do so because others have done it so that Whitey’s evil can be seen for what it is in comparison to others.  

I was forced to make the comparison in part because I came across a preposterous statement by two authors, Gerald O’Neill and Dick Lehr who worked together at the Boston Globe and who wrote a book about Whitey. They wrote:  “In the annals of crime in the United States, Whitey Bulger today stands at the front of the line that includes John Dillinger, Al Capone, Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow, and, more recently John Gotti. His list of victims matches or exceeds that of any other crime boss, . . . “

How is it this outlandish statement is made? What is behind it that these authors elevate Whitey to a height where it is patently obvious he does not belong? It couldn’t be simply that he was an FBI informant and protected by the FBI. Steven Flemmi a more vicious criminal was also such an informant and had been protected ten years longer than Whitey. So were other murderers involved in its Top Echelon Informant Program.

What then makes these authors write this absurd statement? Why do they want to push Whitey to the pinnacle of criminals in America when he is far below many in Boston not to mention not in the same league as others throughout the country who were much more vicious and feared. They, others in the media, the federal prosecutors, federal judges, and the enemies of people in power, the ones who hide knives in their cloaks ready to strike, combined together to deceive the public. It was done for one purpose which was to destroy a man they abhorred and sought to bring down. That was Whitey’s brother, Bill.

He served thirty-seven years in elective office in Massachusetts arising to the position which he held for 17 years which was president of the Senate. He was appointed president of the University of Massachusetts after leaving the Senate. He was a man of impeccable integrity when it came to the public well-being.

By elevating Whitey they could suggest but for his brother’s involvement in his activity he could never have reached this height. They could reinvent history. They could pretend Whitey was notorious during his criminal days when hardly anyone in the public heard of him.

True, he became notorious long after he fled the Boston area and was hiding out in California. That was because the media and others reinvented him into something that he never was. It was a dastardly scheme to get revenge against Bill for the way he treated the media, the authors, the Boston Globe and those seeking favors he refused to grant because they clashed with his values and were not in the public’s interest.

This is the story of The Great Whitey Myth.



    Third sentence men, not me
    Weeks . . .strong arm associate . . . .five murders . . . .

    Also, when pointing out the deal with Martorano, please make sure to add that he did no have to say anything about his brother’s murders/crimes nor his associates murders/crimes

    Also, as far as his lies about the Tony Veranis murder, make sure to point out that the most trusted man in Savin Hill, Father Peter Hart, said Tony was going straight, working construction, supporting his mom and dad, andwould not be carring a gun up a barroom
    Also Tony’s pro boxing record was 22 wins 2 loses and 2 draws . . .he was great . . .stopped his pro career at age 20, concussion from Bobby Murphy o f brighton . . .No way Martorano outmuscled a pro boxer, nor beat him to the draw . . .Martorano had quicker hands or was stronger than a world class pro boxer . . .what a lie . . .and Billy Sullivan from Savin Hill would have shot Martorano and his brother if he saw them draw guns on Tony Veranis

    No, Tonywas killed the same way Martorano killed all his victims, he and his brother Jimmy snuck up on them and shot them in the back of the head . . .cowardly killers

    Tony Veranis would have beaten both Martorano brothers to a pulp at the same time in a fair fight . . .and everyone knows that

    also read the trusted sports writer Bob Coyne who told the truth about Tony being on the straight and narrow . . .and another priest at Walpole confirmed the same thing . . .Tony was working construction, off drugs and alcohol everyone said, helping his paremtns, taking kids from the neighborhood to boxing matches

    • Also, I’ve read, and published in one of my short books, Character Assassins I or II, the fact that Tony apparently had beaten up Jimmy Martorano and JImmy’s friend in a fair fight . . .both of them . . .and that’s why the Martorano brothers and their associates came after Tony with GUNS

  2. John King McDonald


    My Gift to you : THE GREAT WHITEY MYTH

    Saw away .

    In the grandest paradox of all, your publication of a book with a title that contributes to the myth that you purport to detest is one of the more cynically mercenary exercises executed in these and parts unknown in some time .

    You are still good for that Guinnness .

    • John:

      Thanks, accepted with pleasure – been toying with another title which I better put out right now before others claim it” “Feds, Reds, Blacks and Blues” – subtitle “The Story of J. Edgar Hoover’s Love of America.”

      I was accused at one point by former FBI agent Robert Fitzpatrick of stealing from him the title to my book “Don’t Embarrass the Family.” He said he wrote in it the expression “don’t embarrass the FBI” in his 2011 book. I actually got the idea for the title, as I explained in the book, in 2003 from Frank Salemme’s testimony where he said he told his capos they could let their men do anything they wanted as long as they did not embarrass the family.

      As for the expression “Don’t Embarrass the Bureau” that was the title of a 1972 book by a former FBI agent. It is also contained in most stories about the FBI under J. Edgar and how it was its first commandment.

      I understand Jane Austen’s heirs are in the process of suing any person who named their daughter Emma. They allege copyright infringement on the use of that name. c

    • Disagree, John . . . .Matt’s book will deflate the Myth, as Chester Darling and a handful of rebels “we few, we band of brothers” deflated the Myths of the Globe, leftist Media, leftist Academia, leftist-liberal Judiciary that the South Boston Allied War Veterans Council were not entitled to FIRST AMENDMENT, FREE SPEECH AND FREE ASSOCIATION rights.

      MATT, here is not the mythmaker: The FEDS, Carr, Cullen, the Globe, Academia, the Media, and the liberal leftists in general are . . . .the PROPAGANDISTS . . . .Matt is telling the Truth and presenting the FACTS, in perspective, an accurate history, sans the Propaganda-Agit-Prop-hate Conservatives garbage the Media and FEDs throw at us daily, especially over the last several decades

  3. Hi Matt:
    I see two writers, Casey Sherman and David Wedge, have just just gotten a contract with Morrow to write another book about Bulger. So the interest is still there. I see you’ve got a point of view, but you’ll need some previously unpublished material to get a commercial book contract. Hope you’ve got it. I like the idea of knocking Bulger down, since all the other books build his legend, including the latest entry, evidently.

    • Dan:

      I’ve a few things other people don’t have. I grew up in Old Harbor Village and know and understand its culture. I’ve the experience of over 20 years as a prosecutor whose done up to 100 wiretap investigations on organized crime. I’ve tried many felony cases including from murder on down. None of the others have these experiences.

      I’ve got my own point of view on the whole affair so I’m going to give it a go. Not so much interested in an commercial contract but just seek to put my thoughts in a readable form for some people to enjoy. I write for the pleasure of writing and learning new things as you could have guessed from this blog.

    • John King McDonald

      Just tell them Matt:TOO LEGIT TO QUIT

    • Likely will not get a Commercial Book Publisher, as they are mostly controlled by the Leftists who like the false narratives linking the conservative pro-life Bill Bulger of impeccable character with his gangster brother Whitey

      Remember too the atavistic thinking, Salem-era-witch hunt mentality, that caused Jeff Jacoby of the Globe to call for the SHUNNING of Bill Bulger

      They hate conservative pro-life politicians/intellectuals at the Globe, Media, many major publishing houses

      The only chance is a Federastist Society type conservative publishing house

  4. John King McDonald

    Let me spell it out for you Matt :

    Easily found in your archives and, duly preserved now , are my coinage of THE WHITEY MYTH ( We note I always used Capitals. Your placing GREAT in front of it and then distorting it by employing it to describe Media hyperbole etc. is lamentable . I OWN THAT ARTISTIC CREATION – THE WHITEY MYTH – And its contents, as I explored them thoroughly on this blog at that time, had largely to do with the character assassinating , South Boston Culture assassinating and Lady Justice gang raping apocryphal stories about his murders of people he did not murder . Here we speak directly to the absurdity, if you knew the guy at all, of any belief that he would murder a woman , let alone two women in a style of macabre fiction a person in high school would be ashamed to write, let alone an aspiring Stephen King in the Federal Prosecutor’s stable . Flemmi killed the girls . Any idiot knows that. The Feds chafe at my holding them in an EMBRACE that is affectionate . ALL KNOWING . and censuring. What they did in the case of THE WHITEY MYTH was conjure up virulently pathological excesses of their own DIS-EASED mentality about ALL THINGS BULGER AND SOUTHIE and lay it out to a gullible public and a compromised and complicit Judiciary . They like crazy tales then they may find that the TRUTH is stranger than any crazy tales if these matters are held to a scrutiny that their BADLY DONE HIT ON WHITEY has now encouraged . As I said before . He could easily have been euthanized in a medical setting.. And of course that despicable action brought us to this .

    I met Jimmy when I was quite young . I always distanced myself from his Crew and from him . He was a good guy . He had extremely undisciplined people around him . And , Yes , I do consider Matt’s gangster crush boy Steve Flemmi , a molestor a psychopath and a murderer of women and I suspect a necrophiliac because he is that sick and a mutilator and dismembered of women to have been Undisciplined . JIMMY WAS HIGHLY DISCIPLINED ETHICALLY ABOUT WOMEN . He was buried in the infamy of deeds he did not do . And the Feds will move Heaven and Earth to conceal the deeds he did . And here enter the USEFUL IDIOTS OF THE MEDIA —


    • I agree with you here, John, well said a gift for artful expression, you have, and we both deplore the FED prosecutors and their abettors in Boston, DC et al

  5. John King McDonald

    The beautiful thing about the guy was that he totally avoided celebrity .

    Use THE GREAT WHITEY MYTH as a book title and Steve Weymouth initiating a plagiarism suit will be no MYTH at all .

    You are so ensnared in the paradox of your own thought process you have forgotten what it is to think straight about the guy : You never met him . You discount all first , second , and third hand accounts of him that created the ” Myth ” and having set up that dopey straw man now burn it down .

    It is a seriously masturbatory intellectual process . It is a closed Matt Connolly circuit .


    Someone thought he was worth it .

    Bad enough to be silent when that happened Matt . Sucking up to the Feds ain’t gonna get you anywhere .

    I … On the other hand … Will treat to the occasional Guinness .


    • We need Matt’s book . . .his point of view, critical of the FEDs and of the Myth, comes from a man traditionally pro-establishment . . .and former prosecutor himself . . . .he sees through the EVIL the FEDs and Media

      NO SUIT FOR HAVING THE SAME TITLE FOR DIFFERENT BOOKS . . .IT’S CALLED FREE SPEECH, FREE EXPRESSION, FREEDOM OF THE PRESS . . .a new York times columnist stole a popular title to write a different view about the middle east

  6. John King McDonald

    Matt :

    The first person to name and delineate THE WHITEY MYTH on this blog was John King McDonald . Since that time Juror 12 appropriated my nomenclature, but had the good grace to start putting it in quotes : ” THE WHITEY MYTH .” This avoids plagiarism.

    You so far have unethically appropriated my intellectual content by proposing some sort of discovery and debunking process wherein you now take my terminology and propound it as your own . THE WHITEY MYTH is my language and I speak it with a fluency that the Feds are well aware of . I met him when I was fifteen . My writings, extensive , of THE WHITEY MYTH are easily researched .

    Your CLUMSY fishing expeditions involving invidious hit man comparisons is atrocious in its lack of subtlety . The Feds are on the fish hook for BILLIONS if they don’t understand that if I run upon my sword that I will have Amanda hold it for me .

    Enough of this nonsense . The BILLIONS in civil damages are safe etc.

    Just don’t piss me off .


    • John, study Free Speech, Free Press law, read the precedents about publishing ideas . . .unless someone steals your exact lyrics and claims them as your own, you are out of luck . . .and stop throwing spitballs, . . .no adult threatens others with spitballs, except our President who I like . .I like Trump . . .I like Ike . . .Ike didn’t throw around spitballs or threats . . .it’s childish, barroom stuff AT BEST

      • John King McDonald

        Bill :

        You are not the arbiter of what is and is not written in this blog ; nor are you in the league where you can yet distinguish a Spitball from High Inside Heat.

        Enough POMPOSITY

        No good deed goes unpunished

        Especially with the Irish

        You have a slunk, nay let us say slithered like the Wise Serpent of Christ … Be Thou Wise As A Serpent And Gentle As A Dove ( a Billy C . literary digression lower the cases Judge aside ) … With a brilliant observation about artful writing by me and a snootful of Matt’s butt which you are ardently kissing with this nonsense remark .

        That’s batting 500

        Stop crowding the plate .

        • John King McDonald

          Bill :

          You belatedly weighed in on a matter that Matt and I had ARTFULLY resolved a day before . This was apparent from the comment you had to read first in the thread. Yet. Like a pedantic whynging fussy schoolteacher you could not resist stamping your little boot on the floor and launching into your morose diatribe. There was no issue involved. The matter has to do with basic ethical awareness as regards the wholesale freighting of a writer’s WORK into a different container and shipping it as your own . Your arid pronouncements about what is and is not legally relevant is out of context here.

          It is exhilarating for you to fire your mouth off at me with your Barroom Big Talk to me here. I have always treated you well here. You are out of Line . BOY . I do not drink . Am no child. And was never a denizen of Barrooms as I promised my Great Gran that I never would be .

          If you mouthed off like that to my face I would poleaxe you right between the eyes .

          The bar you reach for illiberally and the One I have set for myself are very different



  7. Wa-llahi! I picked up Preet Bahara’s book, “Doing Justice.” I’ll let you know what I think.

    • Khalid, I look forward to your review . . .always like your ideas, even when we agree or disagree . . .my nephew’s wife’s grandfather, from Lebanon, is a practicing Muslim . . . .I am related by blood and marriage to just about every race, religion and ethnic group in the world

  8. John King McDonald


  9. John King McDonald

    Now . That . Is a PARADOX .

  10. John King McDonald

    We Set Up The Hit And Now Tell Us All About It

    Working the Title .

  11. Matt, I’m glad to see that you are digging into the hard task of writing this book. Looking forward to additional signs of progress. Best of luck!

  12. John King McDonald

    Matt :

    Nice profilers

  13. It is a great introduction. Shows the pernicious nature of the media. Today almost no one trusts them.. What happened to the mystery tour to Boston.

  14. There’s a much better way to introduce an authentic story.
    Best you seek a ghost writer.

    • Timothy:

      Thanks for you input.

    • I disagree . . .feel free to speak openly . . .put your face and name on your expressions . . .this is America . . . .fight the FEDs and Media Goons who try to suppress or alter Free Expression