A master at deception and Machiavellian intrigue, Carlo Gambino would eventually eclipse all he came in contact with as he rose to become the most powerful mafioso of his time.
Carlo (Don Carlo) Gambino – aka “Carl Gambino” – was born in 1902 in Palermo, Sicily. He immigrated illegally to this country in 1921.
He resided at 2230 Ocean Parkway, an all-brick residence in Brooklyn for years. By the late 1950s, he built an oceanfront ranch-style home on Club Drive in Massapequa on Long Island. His next-door neighbor was his close friend and top capo Ettore (Terry) Zappi.
He had several brothers who would join him in the life. He also had three sons, and many cousins on both sides of the Atlantic, who were active mafiosi.
The closest of these would always be his brother Paolo (or Paul in English), a capo and his closest advisor and partner.
The Gambinos were related to the Castellano, Masotto, Scarpulla, and Guglielmini families, among others, all of whom were well-established mafiosi in their own right.