Family Secrets: Jurors are Friends

Image from Jeff Coen's Book "Family Secrets: The Case that Crippled the Chicago Mob." This doesn't look anything like us, but even the artist figured out the relationship between me and Red. I am sure that's why the sketch conceals our identities.

We are nearing the end of the Operation Family Secrets trial. You won’t want to miss the next few posts. To catch up on the series, you can visit this page. And please feel free to comment or ask questions. Your email addresses won’t be revealed.

Tom’s Turn:
It’s amazing how people are drawn to others during jury duty. You immediately figure out the nuances on who would “talk” and who would rather stay to themselves during the breaks and lunches.  After a few days, some of us started lunching together.

One day while we were in line at Pompei across from the Dirksen Building, we noticed that one of the defendants who was not in custody was standing in line behind us. That was a little nerve-wracking. He was one of the two defendants that I could not have taken.

There were probably six or seven of us who were close during that time.  In lieu of our juror numbers and actual names, we resorted to nicknames.  These included:

Goomba – Me (I was big, and reminded everyone of Frank Saladino aka Goomba, a defendant who died before the trial)

Red – Explained earlier (cute redhead)

Candy Striper or Striper – Former owner of a candy store in the suburbs

Target —  Local pharmacist

Auctioneer – Fast talker that no one could really understand

Shorty – A tall juror, who we used Frank, Sr., speak and deemed “Shorty”

Gator – A guy who wore a lot of the University of Florida gear

Lindy –  Was Lindy.  He didn’t buy into the anonymous stuff, and wanted to use regular names.

Blondie – Had Blonde hair, again, one of the more creative names.

The list went on, but you get the picture.  I am actually in touch with a few of them to this day.  In fact, many are following the blog right now. (Feel free to leave a comment!)  I have not seen my guy Lindy, nor heard from him since the trial.  We talked Cubs daily, and I’d check the Doppler daily for him on my phone so he could gauge his commute home.  We shared a lot of laughs, and I hope he is doing well.

These are all great people, and we were attached. Unless you lived through the trial, there is no way that you could truly understand the experience.

We may have a reunion in the future.


The following books about the trial are available from Barnes & Noble:

Permanent link to this article: http://www.mom-mom-mom.com/2011/05/13/family-secrets-jurors-are-friends/


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  1. hyguy


    Were you the one giving out the nicknames?

  2. Goomba

    It was a team effort with all of the jurors. I would say I was very instrumental. The jurors were and all are wonderful people. HY GUY….Thanks for the post and following the post. The fruit basket is in the mail….

  3. hyguy

    I figured you were instrumental. BTW…nothing better than a good looking redhead!!

  4. Donna

    Great nicknames Goomba! You probably can’t find Lindy because he didn’t want a name and “they” found him first! …just kidding! I look forward to the next post! Take care!

  5. JP

    I bet you could have taken more than two if you put your game face on. I’ve seen it in action and it’s money.

  6. Mia

    Lovin it…..keep it coming Goomba!!!

  7. Mia

    oh ya and I want a nickname…..

  8. Col

    Good one, Goomba! You are a great name-giver. I know Sticks and Bones appreciate your talents…

  9. Hedgehog

    Hey Goomba…just got summoned for jury duty. There’s no McHenry County Outfit that you know of, is there?

  10. Goomba

    Good point on my guy Lindy. Sooner or later, I’ll hook up with him. He is in a pretty isolated part of the state. Thanks for following….

  11. Coach Garvey

    The game face hasn’t come out in a while, but when I do break it out, it ain’t pretty. Thanks for following…

  12. Keepyourheaddown

    Thanks for following Mia!!

  13. Buttermaker

    I’m working on it Slim, it will be a good one!!!

  14. Kinger

    Sticks and Bones excite me!! C’mon!!!!

    Thanks for the comment Col…

  15. Locker 191

    The Lake-in-the-Hills crew is pretty much dismantled. I have heard some rumblings of stuff going on in Marengo, but you should be ok!! Thanks for following!!

  16. Hedgehog

    Thanks for the info 191! Am I going to see you this weekend at the fundraiser?

  17. Locker 191

    Unfortunately I won’t be there in body, but will be there in spirit….Have fun!

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