Nick Civella – beginnings

Mario Puzo took from real life in his novel, The Godfather. In New York City younger Sicilian immigrants were seeing their fathers victimized by the old fashioned “Mustache Petes” by the Black Hand organization. The young guys  were also being kept out of the more lucrative rackets. They struck back eventually. In 1940s Kansas City, a young Nick Civella showed his independence from the Mustache Petes by holding up “protected” gambling games.

In William Ouseley’s Mobsters in our Midst, former F.B.I. Agent Ouseley writes that on January 22, 1946 a confederate of Nick’s named Joe “Buggy” Anch was murdered. Eight days later, Nick was meeting with  Jackson County Deputy Sheriff named Louis Cuccia at the Trucker’s Liquor Store, 1901 E. 15th. Nick sat in the passenger seat of his car while Deputy Cuccia sat in the driver’s seat. Gunfire erupted and the Deputy was killed. Nick got away and fled to Chicago, Illinois. He had connections there and was protected until he could negotiate his return.

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