Mafiosi nicknames seem to go with the territory. Some guys revel in them, whereas others won’t allow them to be spoken in their presence. This is hardly surprising, as many of the names actively poke fun, or are even downright derogatory on occasion.
So, just for the hell of it (and to amuse ourselves, we won’t lie) we’ve compiled a list of the best Mafia nicknames. There were so many great ones to choose from, some famous and some not so much, but after careful consideration, these are the names that made the cut for our top twenty.
Thomas Bilotti: The Toupee
Tommy Bilotti was also known as ‘The Toupee’ which I think is self-explanatory. I’ll take a wild guess and say he didn’t like to hear this said to his face. Bilotti served as underboss in the Gambino family for just two weeks, before he was shot and killed, along with boss Paul Castellano, outside Sparks Steak House in Midtown Manhattan on December 16, 1985.
Jack Rizzocascio: Jack the Whack
Jack Rizzocascio, also known as ‘Jack the Whack’, is an associate with the Colombo family.
Anthony Casso: Gaspipe
It’s said that former Lucchese underboss, Anthony ‘Gaspipe’ Casso was given his nickname because of his father’s connections to the Mob. Michael Casso was an enforcer in his day and reputedly carried around a piece of pipe to ‘help’ in his work. Anthony Casso is currently serving 455 years in prison without the possibility of parole.
Joseph Carna: Junior Lollipops
Joseph Carna, who was also known as ‘Junior Lollipops’, was a capo in the Colombo family. His nickname comes from his father, who owned a place by the name of ‘Lolly’s’. Joseph Carna died of natural causes in August, 2012, part way through a six month prison sentence.
Louis Attanasio Jr: Louie HaHa
Louis Attanasio Jr, also known as ‘Louie HaHa’ is allegedly a capo in the Bonanno family. Apparently his nickname come about because he tended to laugh whenever he heard of a mobster’s death.
John Gotti: The Dapper Don, The Teflon Don
Flamboyant Gambino boss John Gotti had a few monikers, mostly given to him by the media. It’s pretty easy to figure out why he was called The Dapper Don, as he was such a sharp dresser. His ‘Teflon Don’ nickname became his trademark after being acquitted in several court cases, and again this phrase was coined by the media due to the fact that no charges would stick. Read more on Mr Gotti here.
Pasquale Spirito: Pat the Cat
Pat Spirito, was known as Pat the Cat because of his con artist charm and demeanor. He was a soldier in the Philadelphia crime family, and was killed on the orders of boss Nicky Scarfo for failing to carry out a contract. Basically he got whacked for not whacking someone. Pat Spirito also has a sideline in being mistaken for the elusive Billy Batts. Many a debate has been fought on various social media channels over this very topic. Search for a picture of Batts and you’re sure to find Spirito.
Thomas Pitera: Tommy Karate
Tommy Pitera, also known as Tommy Karate, was a hitter in the Bonanno family. Renowned for his ability to chop bodies up in bathtubs, he had what was described as his own private cemetery near a wildlife reserve in Staten Island, where he would bury his victims. He is currently serving life in prison after being charged with six murders, though he narrowly missed being handed the death sentence. His nickname comes from his love of martial arts. Read more here.
Angelo Ruggiero: Quack Quack
Angelo Ruggiero, also known as Quack Quack, was a close friend of John Gotti, and eventually a capo in the Gambino family. He earned his nickname through his incessant talking. Gotti stripped Ruggiero of his rank, after he was heard on FBI tapes, though Gotti wanted him whacked originally – but was talked out of it by Sammy ‘The Bull’ Gravano as Ruggiero had terminal cancer by that time. He died at the age of 49 on December 5, 1989.
Israel Alderman: Ice Pick Willie
Israel Alderman was a Las Vegas casino manager with ties to organized crime. He had interests in the Flamingo, El Cortez and the Riviera, along with Meyer Lansky and Benjamin ‘Bugsy’ Siegel, et al. It’s said he had a colorful background as an enforcer in Minneapolis, and earned his unusual nickname through stabbing people with an ice pick through the ear drum. He eventually wound up in prison on tax evasion charges.
You can find Part Two of this series HERE and Part Three HERE.
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