Gallo gangsters became neighborhood heroes.
Noticing a fire in a nearby apartment building on Jan. 31, 1962, Lawrence and Albert Gallo (brother Joey Gallo was in prison at the time), Anthony Abbatemarco, Leonard Dello, Alfonso Serantino, John Commarato and Frank Illiano rushed into the building and rescued six children from a third-floor apartment. They also succeeded in extinguishing the blaze before firefighters arrived.
"We'll probably get locked up for
putting out a fire without a license."
|Gallo gangsters, Anthony Abbatemarco, Albert Gallo and Frank Illiano|
(left to right) with the children they saved from a fire.
When interviewed, Albert Gallo joked, "We'll probably get locked up for putting out a fire without a license." (Joseph Kiernan and Henry Lee of the New York Daily News reported the quote differently: "With our crummy run of luck, we'll probably be pinched for fighting the fire without a union card.")
|Abbatemarco, Gallo and Illiano (left to right) pose with the family.|
Biography of Anthony Abbatemarco.