Search transcripts:    Advanced Search
Notable New     Yorkers
Select     Notable New Yorker

Edward KocheEdward Koche
Photo Gallery

Session:         Page of 617

But then Carmine had issued sort of a proclamation that he really wanted to change his operation and he was looking for young people. I was approached by two guys -- George Delaney and some other fellow, Ed Hale -- who were young; both of them ultimately joined me in going back to the VID, but prior to that they had asked me if I wouldn't go up to Tamawa, Carmine's club, that they were two captains there and they wanted new people. And I said, “Sure.” So I went up in something like '57 or '58, and George Tombini, who was Carmine's uncle and ran that club -- they just recognized me. I mean they were friendly in the sense of genteel but they didn't let me do anything. I think I was the only guy in the club who was wearing a three-button suit, and I just stood by myself like a sore thumb. So I stayed there for about six months and I said, “The hell with it,” and I just dropped out. They missed the boat, because if they had let me participate, who knows what would have happened? I probably wouldn't be a Congressman today.


When you talk about the three-button suit, you're talking about narrow lapels, Brooks Brothers style. And do I correctly recall that at the time the two button was still in style and the huge shoulders, and that's what the old members still wore: and even though you were wearing what you were supposed to wear as far as Manhattan went, they looked at you a little suspiciously? You were a foreigner; you were an alien.

© 2006 Columbia University Libraries | Oral History Research Office | Rights and Permissions | Help