I read the news today- oh boy- News headlines from 50 years ago today- Friday February 14, 1969.
- Just three days after President Richard Milhous Nixon made it perfectly clear that he was declaring a war on organized crime- he indirectly was getting results. Vito Genovese an Italian born American mobster died of a heart attack while imprisoned at the federal medical center in Springfield, Missouri. Vito Genovese was 71 years old. Genovese rose to power back in the days of prohibition was an enforcer -he was a childhood friend of Lucky Luciano’s. He would later take over the Luciano crime family and it would become the Genovese crime family- and he would be known in the mid 50’s as “The Boss of the Bosses.” In November 1957 he called a meeting of the bosses to consolidate his power- at the farm of mobster Joseph Barbara in Apalachin, New York. The Apalachin Conference would be raided by police. Genovese was stopped by police driving away from the scene. He told them he was just there for a barbecue and was let go. In July 1958 Vito Genovese was indicted on charges of conspiring to import and sell narcotics. He was given a 15 year prison sentence. He continued to run things from his Atlanta prison cell.
- Pope Paul VI on this day issued Mysterii Paschalis- a motu proprio- which deleted many of the names from the Roman calendar of saints- including on St. Valentine’s Day- St. Valentine himself. Pope Paul VI would serve as Pope from 1963 until his death in 1978. In October 2018 Pope Paul VI was made a Saint.