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Benny was a "man's man" in every sense of the word and a tough but a fair agent. With his piercing eyes and intense stare he could burn a hole through a man's head.  Many of his disputes were settled without the need of words being exchanged.

Unlike many union officials, Benny made sure that the men from Local 860 gave the contractors a fair shake when it came to productivity and that the contractors paid the men what they had coming and treated them with respect. 

Race or nationality did not matter to the Big Man. He treated all the members of local and contractors with the utmost respect until they made the mistake of "crossing the line." Through the years Benny had many confrontations with contractors and out of line members, some verbal and many physical. 

Every Saturday morning Benny had the pay table set up at the union hall stacked with thousands of dollars to cash checks for the member. This was a courtesy he extended to them, mostly for the members that didn't have a bank account. Next to the cash was a loaded 45 pistol and a shot gun that served as a "just in case". 

One Saturday morning after a good night out of drinking, one of the big black members came into the union hall drunk and challenged Benny with a gun.  "Big Ben what you gonna do if I stuck this gun under your nose and took all that "bread? ”Benny stood up without responding to the drunk, relieved him of his gun, grabbed him by his collar and the seat of his pants and threw him through the glass front door without opening it.  Standing over the bleeding man Benny said; "Henry, I will see you here on Thursday night for the meeting. Come sober and bring $100.00 for that broken door."  


He helped out hundreds of people that were down and out, mostly people he didn't even know. He helped college students with summer jobs many men going through the seminary gave down and out people money out of his pocket if they needed it, and always refused any gifts in return.

Benny drove Chryslers and Pontiacs when the other union officials in the city were driving Lincolns and Caddies. Being a union leader in those days was a prestigious position and most of agents of other unions took advantage of their jobs at the union's expense. Benny spent the union's money like it was his own, not with abandon but with great care. 

Benny initiated retirement plans and hospitalization plans for the union's members that were virtually nonexistent at that time. Mostly all of the members were opposed to the benefits because a small portion was deducted from their check. They finally realized Benny's wisdom when they or their family were hospitalized or their retirement time came around.

The Big Man had as many enemies as he did friends but everyone including "the boys on the Hill” considered him a straight shooter and a fair man until the "new lions" came to power. 

Through all the deception, the killing, bombing and turmoil he had to deal with, Benny maintained his own dignity and kept the mob out of his union.  Unbeknownst to him he made the greatest mistake of his life when he told Frank Mannetti "I will see what I can do" when the old man asked him for a favor.


The ordeal he was put through because of his unusual attributes, loyalty and a promise he made to a guy with "half a face" caused this very dignified man to check out at an early age of 77 years old after suffering for years with Parkinson's disease. There was no justice for Big Ben, just self-satisfaction and pride. 

He got the last laugh by outliving most of his adversaries that were trying to bring him.

This most intriguing true story has all the makings of a phenomenal movie or screen play; unions, the mob, bombings, murder, sex, betrayal, humor all wrapped into one.

 

CAST OF CHARACTERS

Benny ( Big Ben ) Iacampo                                         Main character

Antoinette Iacampo / Pistilli                                         Ben's Wife

Marty Iacampo Sr.                                                      Benny's son 2nd son

Benny Iacampo Jr.                                                      Benny's 1st son

Celia Iacampo                                                             Benny's daughter

Father O' Donnell                                                       Big Ben's confident

Frank Mannetti                                                           consigliari to the mob

Frank Brancato                                                           mobster Frank

Jimmy Johnson                                                          Giant black friend of Benny

Tony (Tony Lib) Libratore                                           mobster

Joe Porrello                                                                bootlegger

Joe Lonardo                                                                bootlegger

Grandma Cecelia Pistilli                                             Antoinette’s mother

Grandpa Tony Pistilli                                                 Antoinette’s father

John Scalish                                                               mobster

Mario Chiciano                                                           baker

Carmen Iacampo                                                        Ben's father

Libby Iacampo                                                            Ben's mother

Connie Iacampo                                                         Ben's sister

Jimmy Hoffa                                                                International Teamster

Sam Busacca                                                              Teamster BA / Cleveland

Pat Ranallo                                                                  Teamster BA / Cleveland

Babe Triscario                                                             Teamster BA / Cleveland

Danny Greene                                                             Irish mobster

Frank Converse                                                           Head of local 18

Sesal Engelburg                                                          dynamite expert - he thought

John Condrat                                                              midget laborer ball buster

Frank Milano                                                               mobster Frank

Bob Hope                                                                   Packy East

Jesse Owens                                                               Benny's close friend - fastest man in the world

Mrs. Lonardo                                                              mobsters wife

Angelo Lonardo Jr                                                      mobster Angelo

Dominic Sosparito                                                      robbed slots w/ Benny

Emilio Fontana                                                           robbed slots w/ Benny

Angelo Calabrese                                                       robbed slots w / Benny

Warden Galttke                                                         Mansfield PRISON warden

Doris Nemer Ben's                                                     secretary

John De Marco                                                           mobster

Pitaressi Family                                                          beat up OD / baptism 

Mrs. Ianamorelli                                                         OD housekeeper squeeze

Alan Dewitt                                                                 construction co. owner

Cianci Brothers                                                           union rowdies Fianici Brothers

James (Jack White) Licavoli                                       mobster

Leo Morceri                                                                 mobster

Mike Frato                                                                  rubbish hauling owner

Shondor Burns                                                           Jewish mobster

Frank Conegilo                                                           bagman & friend of Marty's

John Martin                                                                Marine Corps friend - brawling buddy 

Donny Harris                                                              Construction Co. owner

Geraldine Rabinowitz                                                 FBI worker

Jerry Rabinowitz                                                         Geraldine's husband

Tony Sanito                                                                 nickle and dime mobster

Moe Dalitz                                                                  Vegas hood

Dennis Kuscinich                                                        Mayor of Cleveland

Tom Arconti                                                               Laborer Leader / friend

And a few more rascals 



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