Assassin. He immigrated to America from his native Calabria, Italy an excellent brick layer having learned the trade at the age of six when his father took him out of school and put him to work. He developed severe stomach ulcers which caused him horrible stomach pains. His problem was never diagnosed and he became demented blaming everyone for his condition from his father to government officials. While living and working in Miami he was given the opportunity to cure his condition by killing a high government official. Franklin Delano Roosevelt was in the city and the President-elect was to participate in a victory parade through downtown. He bought a .32 caliber pistol for $6 at a Miami hockshop and headed to Bayfront Park. FDR was a sitting target in his open convertible with Mayor Anton Cermak in the rear seat. Zangara lunged forward shoving Mrs W. H. Cross from his path. She realized his intent and managed to disrupt his aim as he squeezed off round after round into the crowd. Five people were struck with the Mayor fatally wounded. He was quickly overpowered by onlookers and strapped to the luggage rack of a nearby car amid shouts of "Lynch him." Five days later, a defiant Zangara was sentenced to 80 years for attempted murder changed a few weeks later with the death of Mayor Cermak to death by the electric chair. Barely a month after the attempt, he was strapped in and executed at Raiford Prison at the age of thirty three. Relatives refused to claim his body so he joined other killers, rapists and common criminals who are interred in plots in orderly rows marked by a small concrete block with a license tag-shaped metal plaque stamped in the prison's tag plant with a name, date of death and a correction number on the grounds of Railford prison known as "boot hill." After arresting Zangara, doctors examined him and discovered severe ulcers as the cause of his chronic pain which could have been easily treated.
Bio by: Donald Greyfield