Updated news on the Gambino, Genovese, Bonanno, Lucchese and Colombo Organized Crime Families of New York City.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Boyfriend of openly gay NFL draft pick is grandson of Kansas City mafia boss

Vito Cammisano (r.) is seen with his boyfriend, Rams draft pick Michael Sam. Cammisano is a member of a mafia family.

The main squeeze of openly gay NFL player Michael Sam comes from a family of Midwest mobsters.

Vito Cammisano, the hunky 23-year-old former collegiate swimmer, is the grandson of the late Mafia boss William "Willie the Rat" Cammisano.

His father, Gerlarmo "Jerry" Cammisano, 60, followed in the family’s shady business and ended up doing 14 months in prison for running a Kansas City-based gambling ring, according to records.

But on Saturday the Cammisano name became part of a feel-good sports story of the year when Sam became the first openly gay player drafted by an NFL team as Vito proudly stood at his side.

After breaking down in tears when he got the news that his dreams were realized, Sam hugged and kissed Cammisano on the lips as ESPN’s cameras were rolling.
Here's a look at the Cammisano family's Mafia members.

“Have a great week and Go Rams!” Vito Cammisano wrote in an email to the Daily News Monday, referring all questions to Sam’s agent Joe Barkett.

There is no evidence that Cammisano has ever been involved with the Civella crime family of Kansas City like his grandfather.

By all reports, he’s a stand-up guy. A 2013 graduate of the University Missouri with a degree in communications, Cammisino swam competitively for Mizzou from 2009 to 2012.

His aunt, Cathy Nigro, told The News, “He’s been a pleasant, pleasant boy all his life.”
Gerlarmo "Jerry" Cammisano, 60, with son Vito, the supportive boyfriend of Michael Sam.

But his grandfather and father chose a far different road.

Willie the Rat Cammisano was the boss of the Civella crime family until his death 1995. In 1980, he made headlines for refusing to answer a Senate committee’s questions about mob crimes in Kansas City, Mo.

During the 1980 Senate hearing, Fred Harvey Bonadonna, whose father was whacked by the mob, testified about overhearing his dad and William the Rat talk about murder.

“I knew both from my father and others that Willie was called Willie the Rat because he killed people and stuck them in the sewers so the rats could eat them,” Bonadonna told the committee. “He doesn’t like the name. I doubt that anybody ever called him that to his face.”
Vito Cammisano's boyfriend, Michael Sam (pictured), became the first openly gay player drafted by the NFL on Saturday.

Bondonna went into the government witness protection program after testifying against Willie the Rat in an 1978 extortion case.

Vito Cammisano’s dad pleaded guilty in 2011 to federal charges he ran a $3.5 million illegal sports betting ring. Jerry Cammisano was sentenced to 14 months in prison and ordered to forfeit $201,137, according to records.

Meanwhile, Sam’s leap to the NFL was hailed by President Obama major sports breakthrough and praised by LGBT groups.

But Miami Dolphins player Don Jones was paying the price for calling the kiss between Sam and Cammisano “horrible” on Twitter.

The Dolphins fined and banned defensive back from team activities until he undergoes sensitivity training.

Jones, 23, released a statement apologizing to Sam and the Dolphins for “the inappropriate comments that I made” on social media.



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