|Miami Daily News|
Capone suffered an apoplectic stroke at about four o'clock in the morning of January 21, 1947, just a few days after his forty-eighth birthday. It was feared that the unresponsive Capone would soon die. At six o'clock, a Roman Catholic priest, Monsignor William Barry, went to the twenty-five-room estate, 93 Palm Avenue on Palm Island in Biscayne Bay, to administer the last rites. Newspapers learned of the stroke and scrambled to cover the final moments of Capone's life.
By eight o'clock that morning, Dr. Phillips saw some signs of improvement in his patient. At the family's request, the physician became a spokesman, delivering health updates to the swarm of reporters gathering outside the walls around the estate. Capone regained consciousness later in the day, and Dr. Phillips reported to the press that he could speak, though the doctor urged him to remain quiet and rest.
Dr. Phillips told the press on January 23 that Capone continued to show progress in his recovery. The doctor expressed concern that the stroke might leave Capone paralyzed on the left side. "It'll be two or three days before I can tell conclusively about his condition," Dr. Phillips said. "He's doing just about the same and it looks like he is out of danger if there are no unforeseen complications."
The possibility of pneumonia was discussed early the following day. Dr. Phillips reported that Capone was "harboring considerable lung congestion." The patient's condition worsened quickly. Dr. Phillips rushed to Palm Island that afternoon and returned with Dr. Arthur J. Logie, a Miami-based chest specialist, that evening.
Dr. Logie met with reporters as he left the estate. The specialist's prognosis was grim. "I doubt very seriously if there is a chance for recovery. It is impossible to say how long he will last. His lungs are pretty well filled... Both lungs are badly congested and his heart has begun to fail."
The doctors administered oxygen, using tanks and equipment brought to the Palm Island home. Press reports the following day suggested that Capone would already be dead if not for the oxygen pumped into him during the night.
Dr. Phillips and Capone's wife and son were with Capone when he died in his bed at twenty-five minutes after seven on Saturday night, January 25. As he passed, his wife collapsed and required the attention of Dr. Phillips. The doctor emerged from the estate with news of Capone's death at about eight-thirty.
Capone was survived by his wife and his son, both of his parents, two brothers and a sister. His body was taken to the W.L. Philbrick Funeral Home at Miami Beach. Reports indicated that Louis Rago, funeral director at 624 N. Western Avenue in Chicago, flew to Miami Beach to take charge of arrangements, as the family wished for Capone to be buried in a plot in Mount Olivet Cemetery in Chicago.
- "Ex-Gangland chief rallies after stroke," Moline IL Dispatch, Jan. 22, 1947, p. 1.
- "Hint Capone's left side may be paralyzed," Chicago Daily Tribune, Jan. 24, 1947, p. 6.
- "Doctor speeds to bedside of Al Capone," Miami Daily News, Jan. 24, 1947, p. 23.
- "Al Capone hit by pneumonia, heart weaker," Baltimore Sun, Jan. 25, 1947, p. 3.
- "Al Capone gets pneumonia, doctor doubts recovery," Brooklyn Eagle, Jan. 25, 1947, p. 1.
- "Capone dying, doctor says," Chicago Daily Tribune, Jan. 25, 1947, p. 1.
- Sosin, Milt, "Capone under oxygen mask, hovers on brink of death," Miami Daily News, Jan. 25, 1947, p. 1.
- "Capone dies at island villa," Miami Daily News, Jan. 26, 1947, p. 1.
- "Al Capone dies in Florida villa," Chicago Daily Tribune, Jan. 26, 1947, p. 1.
- "Al Capone, gang czar, dies," Des Moines Register, Jan. 26, 1947, p. 4.
Writers of Wrongs: "Out of prison, into hospital."